CCSI has been awarded a grant from the US Department of Justice – Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention under the Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative. This 3-year grant allows for the PASS Program to be expanded with a specialized program option to serve juvenile justice involved youth and their families, specifically youth identified and referred by the Monroe County Family Access and Connection Team (FACT) or through diversion services.

CCSI is working in partnership with the Monroe County Office of Probation and the FACT Team to identify youth and families for enrollment in the program. The target population is juvenile justice involved youth, ages 12 -17, in pre-petition diversion status, deemed low-risk to public safety by Probation. The program will focus on youth residing within Federally designated Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZs), high poverty areas of Monroe County, located almost exclusively within the City of Rochester. It is expected that the first class of program participants will begin by February 2020.

PASS is a youth and family mentoring program with the goals of improving youth psychosocial, educational and community outcomes and improving parent/guardian communication skills with their children and strengthening their ability to make connections to community social supports and resources. Elements of "Cultural Infusion" are evident throughout the model - mentors are representative of the cultures of the participants; all receive cultural competence training; support is organized around teams, of staff, mentors, youth and parents; youth voice is incorporated ; program delivery is within a culturally appropriate milieu and techniques for curriculum delivery are person-centered, trust-building and relationship focused. A two-tier mentoring approach is used, with adult mentors assisting adolescents in applying strategies learned in the program to their unique life situations, and peer mentors serving as role models. Adult mentors serve as a resource to parents, providing support and guidance for reinforcing their child's learnings.

This grant allows CCSI to further extend the PASS program to youth and families in need in our community, providing support and mentoring to improve youth outcomes and help avoid further contact with the juvenile justice system. Click here for more information about the PASS program.