Supporting Our Youth
The Job & Education Center’s (JEC)positive youth development framework provides referral-based, comprehensive prevention and intervention work, connection to education, employment opportunities, and behavioral health. Provide intensive case management and wrap around supports to Worcester’s most vulnerable youth, with most participants facing barriers related to substance use, gang involvement, and violence. Additionally, JEC staff work to lead systems change in the city, collaborating with integral partners and government leaders.
Shannon – Students Making A Real Transformation/Transition (SMARTT)
SMARTT is a citywide approach that focuses on building healthy, positive relationships between youth, school, home and the community using a case management model. SMARTT provide services to middle and high school aged youth who have been identified by various city agencies as being at risk for being involved in youth or gang violence. The highlights of the program include one-to-one interactions, setting personal and educational goals and working on life skills such as organization, communication and safety behaviors. Referrals to this program come through the schools, police or community partners.
Program partners: Worcester Public Schools and the Worcester Police Department with support from Clark University, as well as the Department of Youth Services and Worcester Juvenile Probation Department.
Safe & Successful Youth Initiative (SSYI)
The Safe and Successful Youth Initiative (SSYI) is a youth violence prevention and intervention initiative operating in 14 cities within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. SSYI targets a small number of individuals, ages 17-24, that local police have identified as “proven risk” or “impact players.” These individuals are determined by police to be substantially gang involved, most likely to be a perpetrator of violent weapons offense, or engaged in or facilitating high volume illegal activity. SSYI reaches out to these individuals and offers them a chance to redirect their lives through educational, employment, and behavioral health services. SSYI combines public health and public safety approaches for eliminating youth violence.
SSYI operates in 14 cities across the Commonwealth: Boston, Brockton, Chelsea, Fall River, Haverhill, Holyoke, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, New Bedford, North Adams, Pittsfield, Springfield & Worcester. These programs are overseen by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS). Commonwealth Corporation provides Technical Assistance support to the network, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Commonwealth Medicine (UMMS/CWM) provides data management and data reporting services.