From Camp to Careers Former Camp Transforms into Groundbreaking Career Training Center In 2018, the conversion of a decommissioned juvenile camp took another step closer to becoming a groundbreaking residential career and educational training center. Created specifically for young men ages 18-25 who were formerly supervised by Probation, involved in foster care, and/or are homeless, the former Camp Gonzales will become a place of hope offering education and job skills. The live-in center will offer career technical training in the fields of building and construction and culinary arts. Additional services offered will include life skills training and a fully-accredited diploma program for those without a high school degree. The project took another step toward completion in 2018 when the Board of Supervisors approved contracts with Los Angeles Trade Technical College and New Earth, who along with the Anti-Recidivism Coalition, will be designing and providing programming for the project. Thanks to the generosity of the Annenberg Foundation, the facility will be extensively remodeled to suit the program’s needs. The planning for this first-of-its-kind project has been a collaborative endeavor led by the Probation Department involving many other County Departments. This is another innovative way that Probation is transforming its approach to juvenile reentry. Once the facility opens in 2019, the program will provide young people with the education and job skills they need to be competitive in the job market and build productive, fulfilling lives. “I wish that something like this existed when I got out of the camp. I probably would not have gotten locked up again if I had been able to go somewhere that helped me focus, away from the distractions of the neighborhood. It would have been easier.” — Greg, former youth at Camp who is now enrolled in school and receiving career training PAWSITIVE CHANGE New Program Teaches Responsibility and Veterinary Care to Girls at Camp Scott A first-of-its-kind rehabilitation and education program launched at Camp Scott in the fall of 2018 designed to benefit the health and well-being of newborn kittens while providing the young women at the facility an education in veterinary medicine and animal care. The program, called Pawsitive Steps Academy, is a collaboration between the Los Angeles County Probation Department and the Department of Animal Care and Control. The program pairs kittens too young to be placed in animal shelters with probation youth tasked with the kittens primary care for eight weeks, emphasizing the importance of the human-animal bond and its impact on both emotional and mental well-being. This exceptional educational opportunity provides hands-on learning experiences that allow the girls insight into possible careers in veterinary services or animal care fields. “What makes this program so unique is that it was created by our girls, for our girls, with our girls. The girls are taught a variety of attributes such as selflessness, patience, and reliability and the kittens receive personal attention, nurturing and ultimately a loving home. The program is a win-win for all involved.” — Sheila Mitchell, L.A. County Probation Chief Deputy for Juvenile Services Dance for Healing Therapeutic Arts Class Builds Confidence and Hope In 2018 the youth at Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall danced to the rhythmic beats of popular hip-hop artists in a new arts-based program called Dance for Healing. Founded by Renee Curry MS, AMFT and Jamie Carbetta, MFA, the program is designed to encourage trauma recovery through rhythm and therapeutic wellness. The program provides youth with tools to build self-confidence and healthier habit-forming skills to overcome trauma and depression. The eight-week innovative art therapy program pairs youth with mentors who lead journal sessions encouraging them to write about their emotions and express how dance helped them during the day. Dance for Healing is a collaborative effort between The Center for The Empowerment of families, Inc. and The Pony Box Dance Theatre and is sponsored by The Arts for Incarcerated Youth Network & the L.A. Arts Commission. “Dancing gave them a sense of hope and a positive outlet from some of the troubles they experience. We saw them blossom and find confidence in themselves that they didn’t know they had.” — Detention Services Officer Ashley Stanton L.A. County Probation Department | 2018 Annual Report 35 34 L.A. County Probation Department | 2018 Annual Report