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Teen program

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  • 1. Program ProposalBy Michelle Scoggins
  • 2.  Reported in 2008, 60.6 percent of juveniles between the ages of 12 to 17 were dependent on or abused drugs as age increased these numbers began to taper down.  37.4 percent of juveniles between the ages of 18 to 25 and 24. 3 percent of adults aged 26 or older (SAMHSA, 2012). 2010 trends of incarcerated juveniles were reported at 779,700 juveniles between the ages of 18-29 either in jail or prison (SAMHSA, 2012). The overall cost for juvenile incarceration is approximately $14.4 billion per year (CASA, 2010). Juvenile costs for substances use, $68 billion per year.  Equivalent to $2280 a year per each juvenile in the US (CASA, 2010). The therapeutic approach of human-canine interaction prove to assist those with building skills, increasing competence and confidence, facilitating healthy attachment, and strengthening of emotional and behavioral regulation (Project POOCH, 2012). MacLaren Youth Correctional Facility’s Project POOCH  Dr. Merriam from Pepperdine University studied the program for three years and of the juveniles she interviewed reported a zero percent recidivism rate (Project POOCH, 2012).
  • 3. Program goal:• Reduce recidivism through object relations attachment vs. traditional substance abuse therapy.• Use alternate treatment to encourage other coping mechanisms beyond substances• Change the juveniles bond from a substance to a living being• Provide unwanted animals with a forever home• Train juveniles how to care for another as a way to prepare for adulthood• Teach the juveniles responsibilities through feeding, cleaning and monitoring animals• Encourage teamwork
  • 4.  Program is offered to youth throughout their incarceration; minimum stay is 6 months and the maximum stay is length of incarceration. Housing maximum for the pilot will be 20 inmates Estimated program cost is $200,000 for a two year pilot project in one youth facility. Ideally a youth facility with an in place substance abuse program looking for a contract renewal, allowing this program to be implemented without structural change. Staff includes  Two counselors  Three therapists  One program director  Support officer staff – provided by the facility  Two mentors  One vocational instructors Teens are linked with an animal where they are responsible for the daily care and training. Upon departure the teen has the option to take or leave the animal. Mandatory monthly drug testing; urinalysis, hair follicle, etc.
  • 5.  Project POOCH. (2012). Our mission: Research. Retrieved on 5/12/2012: http://www.pooch.org/about.php#research National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, Columbia University. (2010). Adolescent substance use: America’s #1 public health problem. Retrieved on 5/12/2012: http://www.casacolumbia.org/upload/2011/20110629substanceuseslide s.pdf.