Youth Diversion Program Kingston

Base

Name

Youth Diversion Program Kingston

Zone

Zone 2: East

Email

info@youthdiversion.org

Website

http://www.youthdiversion.org

About & Services

Vision Statement

The Youth Diversion Program believes that all members of our community have the responsibility to provide all youth with the opportunity to develop and grow to their fullest potential.

Mission Statement

The Youth Diversion Program works in partnership with the youth, families and the community to deliver evidenced based quality programs to assist youth to make positive changes and choices in their lives.

Our Organization

The Youth Diversion Program is a charitable organization which has offered service to youth in the Kingston area since 1974. The goals of the organization are to allow youth to take responsibility for their behaviour, to reduce the number of youth involved in the young offender system, to reduce the number of people victimized by youth in our community, and, to involve the community in youth corrections.

The Program offers two youth justice services which hold youth accountable for their actions, by giving them the opportunity to make amends to their community. The Youth Justice Committee, funded by the Ministry of the Attorney General, meets with some first time offenders, their parents and victims to mediate an appropriate response to the crime. By participating, the youth does not go through the formal Youth Court System. The Extrajudicial Measures Program provides an alternative to formal court proceedings. Referrals come from wither the police or the Crown Attorney, and if successful, a youth will not have a formal youth court record upon completion.

Since 1996 the Program has operated two initiatives to prevent crime. REBOUND, a program which originated in Sarnia , Ontario is a 10 week program for adolescents. Each week, young people attend a 2½ hour session working on such skills as communication, decision making, anger management and conflict resolution. A recent evaluation conducted by a noted psychologist shows that REBOUND has a promising effect on reducing crime, and parents report improvements in their children’s attitudes and behaviours.

The Student in Need Attendance Program (SNAP) provides an alternative to home suspension program, designed to assist students from local schools who have been suspended for violence, aggression and opposition to authority. Rather than spend the suspension period at home, students attend our Program for the duration of their suspension where they receive tutoring on school work, anger management, and other social skills training. Upon their return to school, students and the school receive a report of the youth’s performance, as well as recommendations for continued assistance.

Our Mentor Program provides at risk and delinquent youth with adult volunteers who act as mentors with the youth. Volunteers work with their assigned youth to accomplish specific goals which have been set for the relationship, while providing support and advocacy to the youth.

In partnership with the Limestone District School Board, the program developed an approach to conflict resolution called “Mediating and Empowering through Nurturing Dialogue” (MEND). Youth Diversion staff train school staff and students in the approach, and assist in the resolution of conflict in the school setting.

In 2011, the Program added the substance use and addictions service previously operated by Kairos Rehabilitation Program. The Kairos counselors provide assessment, counseling, referral, and support to young people and young adults who are experiencing difficulty with substance use, gambling, gaming, and other issues in their lives.

Common to all programs is the extensive use of volunteers. Over 100 people provide direct service to our young people during the year, in all aspects of our program. This past year, over 400 youth received support through the Youth Diversion Program’s services. This commitment by people in our community is the element that makes the quality of our programs so high. At the same time , the community support for these initiatives has been incredible, with various service clubs, private citizens and corporations donating money and services to assist the Program to continue the operation of these programs in our community.

Click to listen highlighted text!