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Northeast Florida Resources: At-Risk Youth

Northeast Florida has a vast amount of organizations working to engage at-risk youth in the community through education, intervention, and community outreach. GlobalJax is able to work with many of these organizations to provide innovative ideas for participants of our international programs.

Many of our participants want to learn how to engage and protect youth in their communities and provide better services so that they can become happy healthy members of society. These leaders from around the world have been able to share their own ideas in addition to learning new practices.

Groups like the Jacksonville Police Athletic League (PAL) are able to demonstrate how city police help enrich the lives of children in at-risk communities. Members of PAL create positive relationships between law enforcement officers and youth through educational and athletic programs. Northeast Florida also focuses on issues young women face as they grow up. PACE Center for Girls targets girls aged 12-17 who are identified as dependent, runaway, or delinquent. PACE also helps individuals with emotional health concerns and those in need of academic support. Founded in 1985, the PACE network in Florida has been able to reach more than 37,000 young women.

International participants can learn from local faith groups in Northeast Florida that work together to support the youth through the Interfaith Coalition for Action Reconciliation and Empowerment (ICARE). The collective voices of 38 congregations of local protestants and catholic churches, mosques, and synagogues come together to fight for restorative justice programs in schools across Duval County. The goals of these programs are to address the behavior of juvenile offenders, restore victims and get young people back on the path to good citizenship.

In addition to supporting restorative justice programs, Northeast Florida also works to provide academic support to at-risk youth. Through the Parent Academy of Duval County Public Schools parents are encouraged to stay involved in their children's lives and work to enhance student's academic achievement.

Our region specifically combats gang related violence and the influence of gangs on our youth. In Tallahassee, the state capital, the National Gang Center provides best‐practice information, resources, training, strategic tools, and expertise to help prevent youth from joining gangs and intervene with those who are involved with gangs. Another resource that combats gang influence is the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program (GREAT). This is a school-based curriculum taught by law enforcement officers to reduce delinquency, youth violence, and gang membership by teaching problem solving and life skills that help students avoid delinquent behavior and violence.

These resources are all very valuable to Northeast Florida and we will be able to share them to a group we are hosting in early March who want to learn how to help at-risk youth.

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