Another Chance and a Reason to Believe in Themselves
For justice-involved youth, experiences of trauma, abuse, and neglect often undermined early stages of social and emotional development. Later, life barriers like community isolation and discrimination continue to reduce opportunities for learning important life skills. The Juvenile Corrections Program focuses on social-emotional learning and interpersonal problem solving to teach youth offenders to practice life skills like self-control, accountability, and honesty. Through our assemblies, workshops, videos, books, lesson plans, tips, tactics, and activities, participants learn to better understand the consequences of their actions and strengthen their character. Our program helps decrease recidivism, violence, rules violations, drug use, and truancy. It improves interpersonal relationships and gives the kids hope and a reason to believe in themselves.
This program is so important for our kids because most of them have been let down by so many people in their young lives. Many of our troubled youth have had those closest to them break their word to them countless times, or have been told over and over again that they will never amount to anything. Character development is essential to them to help them see their own potential and just who they have the ability to become.”Ron Stollar, Medina Juvenile Detention Center Superintendent
It’s a true show of character to make a promise and fulfill your word. It is a premise that overcomes all boundaries that can be imposed by an environment or ideology. The act of hand delivering a written promise to another is an intense first-step of human interaction, and claiming back ‘your card’ after fulfilling your promise is an accomplishment in developing integrity and self-worth. We are excited and honored to be a pilot site for such a worthy endeavorJudge Kevin Dunn, Neduba Juvenile Court, Medina Probate Court
A 2013 RAND Corporation study showed that participation in prison education, including both academic and vocational programming, was associated with an over 40 percent reduction in recidivism—saving $4 to $5 for each dollar spent.
We assume kids have these skills. They are not born with them. What better skills to teach than to say what we mean and mean what we say. It will set them up for success. Unfortunately, in today’s society, we do a very poor job at keeping our promises. People notice when good intentions aren’t fulfilled. We judge ourselves by our last good intention, but everyone else judges us by our last worst action. Hopefully, it will impact the kids where they will continuously self-reflect on the promises they make as they grow older. Our lives are so busy in today’s society and culture, it’s difficult to keep our word.”– Ron Stollar, Medina JDC Superintendent
There is a chapter of because I said I would at Medina Juvenile Detention Center where youth participate in character development workshops year round. Recently the kids had an art show and created this giant installation that is coated in copies of their Promise Cards. Look at what they wrote…