The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) released a new resource, Reentry Starts Here: A Guide for Youth in Long-Term Juvenile Corrections and Treatment Programs. This toolkit outlines the steps that youth in juvenile corrections and treatment programs can take to prepare for reentry, from seeking support services, to requesting a school transfer, to finding employment. The publication serves as a resource for detained youth, families, probation officers, counselors, mentors, and other juvenile justice practitioners.
This user-friendly guide is organized into two primary sections:
- Part I: Planning for Reentry offers guidance on steps youth can take while in placement (e.g., a correctional facility or treatment program). It includes information on building a support team comprised of reentry or transition coordinators, parents/guardians, lawyers, mentors, educators, physical and mental health professionals, and other key community members. The section also outlines the importance of connecting to support services, including mental health care, medical/dental providers, and housing; planning for school and work; and understanding rules related to community supervision and aftercare plans.
- Part II: Returning to Your Community contains steps for ensuring successful reentry, including information on using services such as peer recovery services and housing assistance. Additionally, this section empowers youth to move beyond their experiences in placement, from understanding record clearance to using their experiences to help other youth make better choices. Part II also stresses the importance of following probation, parole, and court requirements, as well as keeping up with work and school.
The guide also includes the quick reference tool, “Are You Ready for Reentry? A Pocket Guide for Youth.” Access and explore the toolkit to learn more.