Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $1,000,000)
Rockland Board of Cooperative Educational Services (RBOCES), a municipal educational corporation and the lead applicant for this project, is located in Rockland County, NY, 25 miles northwest of New York City. Funding will support expanding the Partnership for Safe and Healthy Youth (PSHY) capacity to address the growing need to support Rockland County youth exposed to violence in the community and school and to increase student/school/family access to multisector supports. Efforts will focus on reducing the incidence of school violence through improved school safety and climate and preventing youth violence, delinquency, and victimization through community partnerships and evidence-based practices. PSHY is comprised of a multisector team of stakeholders from various county agencies, including RBOCES, the Rockland County Departments of Mental Health, Probation, Social Services, and the District Attorney's Office. Established in 2014, PSHY has extensive experience operating violence prevention and early intervention programs for youth and their families, connecting them to resources to prevent and reduce violence. This project will address OJJDP Priority Areas 1 and 2 by providing culturally-based support for students and families to improve school safety. The Family Resource Center Foundation (a cultural nonprofit organization), Rockland 21C (a family engagement and support organization), and local police departments will expand PSHY's outreach, resources, and services. RBOCES requests a grant totaling 1M for four new PSHY staff to support expansion efforts, including a Project Coordinator, a School-Based PSHY Clinician, and two Family Resource Coordinators. Activities include home visits, school/family/community support, and programs. School Safety Plan development and implementation support and links to resources and expertise will be provided by RBOCES for Rockland County schools.
Youth served through the proposed project include students from RBOCES programs and high-risk students identified by RBOCES' component school districts. Referrals typically come from PSHY's multisector partners, RBOCES operated schools and component school districts, courts/attorneys, parents/family members, and other community-based organizations. Families will also be provided services as a comprehensive approach to supporting students. This project will serve 50 unduplicated students and families attending RBOCES operated schools and RBOCES component districts per year or 150 over the three-year grant period. The target population includes students who are identified as school avoidant/truant, identified through a school-based threat assessment as needing support, and those identified as having risk factors for school violence. These students will receive intensive PSHY services, including home visits and in-school support.