U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

You Can Make a Difference Stories from Juvenile Court CD-ROM

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 2002
0 pages
This CD-ROM features stories of people who made a difference in someone’s life and is presented by the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.
This is a collection of 18 stories, as told by judges, probation officers, police, child dependency workers, lawyers, and others in juvenile and family justice, that show how those in the field of family and juvenile justice have impacted others and made a difference. A retired police officer from Pennsylvania told the story of how his older brother convinced him to enter a boxing ring to fight a one-punch, knock out fighter. His brother built his confidence by saying it is better to win or lose in the ring than to lose in the dressing room. The former police officer met his challenges throughout his life based on this philosophy. Another story was told by a juvenile court officer who felt that finding the right placement for a child was her most important and challenging job. She placed a 9-year-old boy, who had been in a mental health facility and had all his belongings in a garbage bag, in a group home for boys where he flourished. She felt an emotional connection to every child and did not become hardened. A juvenile court judge told the story of a law school experience where he observed a juvenile case where the offender was 17 years old and was considered for a transfer to adult court. His crime was knocking an elderly woman down in a parking lot and taking her purse. Though she suffered a broken hip and arm, the victim appealed for mercy because she felt the young offender was salvageable because he was an honor roll student and active in school. The juvenile court judge listened to the victim, kept the case in juvenile court, and handed down a sentence of 1,000 community service hours. The boy later graduated from high school and is now in law school. The judge used her insight, looked to the future, and weighed the case based on the merits.

Date Published: January 1, 2002