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Secretary's Message

February 5, 2020

Department of Juvenile Justice’s Weekly Letter

Welcome to our weekly letter, where we share the latest news and updates on the great work the DJJ team is doing across the state of Florida. Thank you for taking a moment out of your day to read about the ways our DJJ staff, providers, and partners are working to support youth and families and strengthen our communities.

Please keep sharing your great work, successes, and accomplishments both on and off the clock in serving the youth, families, and communities touched by DJJ. Your stories inspire us all to do more. So, send your good news to news@djj.state.fl.us or call (850) 921–5900 by Thursday at noon.

 

Sincerely,

 

Secretary Simone Marstiller

 

 

 

 


 

2020 DJJ Youth Ambassadors Honored on Youth Success Day

 

First Lady DeSantis with youth ambassadors

youth with secretary marstiller

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Thursday, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice along with our partners celebrated our 2020 DJJ Youth Ambassadors. A big thank you to Governor Ron DeSantis who proclaimed Thursday, January 30th Youth Success Day in Florida! We would also like to thank First Lady Casey DeSantis who hosted the 2020 DJJ Youth Ambassadors at the Florida Governor’s Mansion in celebration of Youth Success Day. Joining the First Lady in honoring this year’s ambassadors was Secretary Simone Marstiller, DJJ leadership, and members of the Florida Juvenile Justice Foundation (FJJF) and the Florida Juvenile Justice Association (FJJA). First Lady DeSantis spoke at length with each Youth Ambassador about their stories and what made them decide to turn around their lives for the better.

youth ambassadors with leadershipOn Thursday evening Secretary Marstiller, the Florida Juvenile Justice Foundation, members of the Florida Juvenile Justice Association, legislators, providers, and community partners honored the 2020 DJJ Youth Ambassadors during the FJJA’s legislative reception at Florida’s Historic Capitol. The Youth Ambassadors received a certificate and Youth Investment Award from the Florida Juvenile Justice Foundation.

 

 

 

Our 2020 DJJ Youth Ambassadors

youth ambassadorsEmma Coyle: Emma was an at-risk youth who enrolled in the PACE Center for Girls Escambia, a DJJ prevention program. At PACE Escambia, Emma, who has a learning disability, was able to overcome obstacles and become a leader at the school and a mentor for her peers. Emma often volunteers within her community at the Ronald McDonald House, Humane Society, Manor Retirement Home and the Open Books program. Emma has excelled, both academically and personally, as she continues to succeed and to embrace her growth.

Zackery Hill: Zackery’s first contact with the juvenile justice system was after being arrested for robbery, and later being placed in secure detention and released on probation. While in detention, Zachery realized the negative impact his actions had made on his life. Zackery made the decision to turn his life around and to overcome the adversity of his actions. He completed his academic requirements, which allowed him to return to high school where he won the Tampa Bay Tech “Turn Around Student of the Year Award” and a scholarship towards college. Zackery turned his academic success into not only a career but also one that gives back to others. Zackery is the owner of Bright Smart Tech, a technology-based company that provides training classes to senior citizens that struggle with the proper use of technology. In addition, Bright Smart Tech offers training classes to teach individuals with special learning disabilities how to use technology and hosts internet safety classes for youth, teaching  them how to stay away from predators while using the internet.

Stephanie Godbolt: Stephanie was also an at-risk youth who joined the PACE Center for Girls Reach program after experiencing the loss of her father. In a state of grief, Stephanie’s grades began to fall, and she was withdrawn and struggled to have healthy communication with her family. While working on her academics and counseling needs, it was determined that Stephanie could benefit from clinical therapy and she was referred to the PACE Center for Girls Reach program. Eventually, Stephanie was able to overcome her challenges, grow more confident, and build on her strengths. Stephanie became not only a friend to her peers but also a leader by modeling generosity, positivity, and patience. This transition allowed Stephanie to become a premier member in the Girl’s Plan-It social justice group within PACE. Stephanie positively asserts herself which continues to create change and encourages her and others like her to become a voice in the community. Stephanie is a role model for PACE girls and has used her adversity as a stepping stone to open a world of new possibilities.

Christian Minor, executive director of FJJA, JPO Lynda Hampton, DJJ Secretary Simone MarstillerJuvenile Probation Officer (JPO) Lynda Hampton was also honored as one of this year’s FJJA Service Excellence Award winners during a presentation at the FJJA Legislative Reception. JPO Hampton was chosen as an FJJA Service Excellence Award winner for her commitment to going above and beyond at all times. JPO Hampton works with local food pantries and solicits assistance from her peers to gather items for families in need.  JPO Hampton has delivered car loads of food items for youth, not only on her caseload, but for other youth in her unit. 

Also receiving FJJA Service Excellence Awards for their outstanding service were Byron Garvin from Youth Opportunity Investments and Ashley Gilbert from PACE Center for Girls.

Leslie Lynch, FJJA President; Christian Minor, FJJA Executive Director; Byron Garvin, Youth Opportunity Investments; Simone Marstiller, DJJ Secretary

Leslie Lynch, FJJA President; Christian Minor, FJJA Executive Director; Ashley Gilbert, PACE Center for Girls, Simone Marstiller, DJJ Secretary

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

DJJ Takes Part in 2020 Children’s Week Celebration and Capitol Days

 secretary speaking at childrens weekLast week was a very busy time at the Florida Capitol! The 25th Annual Children’s Week Celebration kicked off with the Children’s Week Advocacy Awards Dinner and Reception, and Secretary Marstiller served as a guest speaker! The Children’s Week Advocacy Awards Dinner is an annual event where the Chiles Advocacy Award is presented to an individual who has dedicated their life to improving the lives of Florida’s children and families. The 2020 Chiles Advocacy Award Winner was Jack Levine, founder of the 4Generations Institute who previously served as President of Voices for Florida’s Children. At the event, Secretary Marstiller spoke about the importance of prevention services in reaching at-risk youth. Chief of Staff Josie Tamayo, Circuit 2 Chief Probation Officer Ricco Cooper and Gubernatorial Fellow Shakira Abney-Wisdom were also in attendance.

Last Tuesday, as part of the Children’s Week Festivities, the Capitol is transformed into the Children’s Capitol for a Day. The State Capitol courtyard is transformed by hundreds of partner booths with games, activities and entertainment for youth of all ages. DJJ was on hand with our Strengthening Florida’s Families for Safer Communities booth, which was hosted by Office of Prevention team member Verla Lawson-Grady.  

verla lawson-grady tabling at children's week

 


 

secretary at pace dayLast week, Team DJJ also took part in PACE Day at the Capitol and AMIkids Day at the Capitol.  Secretary Marstiller served as a guest speaker during the PACE Day at the Capitol press conference where she spoke to the girls about prevention services and encouraged them to continue making positive strides for their future. Secretary Marstiller and Chief of Staff Tamayo also attended the AMIkids Day at the Capitol luncheon and had the opportunity to meet and speak with several youth from visiting AMIkids programs and members of AMIkids leadership.

secretary and chief of staff at amikids day

 


 

DJJ Participates in Heroes in Public Safety Celebration

heroes in public safety brochureTallahassee Community College recently created a Heroes of Public Safety Recognition Program, and this past weekend, hosted their inaugural Heroes in Public Safety Celebration. Last Friday, Secretary Simone Marstiller along with members of the DJJ Executive Leadership Team attended the Heroes in Public Safety Banquet. The banquet was held at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center and was part of a weekend spent celebrating public safety and honoring individuals who were selected as lifetime achievement honorees and those who were inducted into the Public Safety Hall of Fame. Secretary Marstiller served as the official master of ceremonies for the awards portion of the banquet. We would like to congratulate Marcus Smith, chief of policy and programming with the Office of Prevention, who was a recipient of a Hall of Fame award.  

On Saturday, Secretary Marstiller and DJJ staff participated in Public Safety Day held at the Florida Public Safety Institute. Alumni, community members, and public safety officials attended this family friendly event, which was the first of its kind. DJJ was represented with a booth filled with the resources available to at-risk youth in the community. Secretary Marstiller also presented merit awards on Saturday to individuals who have demonstrated exemplary accomplishments and outstanding personal bravery in the line of duty.

djj staff at table

 


 

Staff Announcements and Kudos

Congratulations to Babatunde “Babs” Shofolu and Oyeyemi “Yemi” Adeyemi for being recognized as the Information Technology (IT) Employees of the Month for December 2019.  Each month, IT recognizes one employee from Headquarters and one from the field using a peer nomination process.  Being nominated by their peers speaks volumes to their work ethic and dedication to this agency.  Congratulations to you both for this deserving award!

Oyeyemi Adeyemi, Systems Project Analyst.Babatunde Shofolu, Systems Project Administrator.

 

 


Congratulations to Senior Juvenile Probation Officer (SJPO) Kayla Caldwell who was voted Circuit 2 Juvenile Probation Officer of the Year! SJPO Caldwell received this honor due to her hard work and dedication to the youth and families in Circuit 2 Probation.  SJPO Caldwell strives for 100% and is determined to meet the needs of her families. In addition to her being a stellar JPO, SJPO Caldwell takes charge to ensure that her unit runs smoothly. She also trains new staff and serves as a mentor through Leon County Schools. She is an asset to Circuit 2 Probation in fulfilling the Department’s mission to serve our youth, families and communities.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

cathy whittwerCongratulations to the following team members who were recently named Circuit 20 Probation’s Employee of Fourth Quarter for 2019 and 2019 Employee of the Year:

Senior Juvenile Probation Officer (SJPO) Cathy Hillman-Wittwer began her journey with the Department of Juvenile Justice, Probation and Community Intervention on October 21, 2016. She was promoted to her current position as a Senior JPO on November 30, 2018. Senior JPO Hillman-Wittwer has been a great asset to the agency and has demonstrated dependability and action-oriented approach. She possesses good leadership, creative and critical thinking skills when time sensitive situations arise. She maintains positive and professional relationships amongst her colleagues, circuit management, stakeholders, youth and families. She exhibited the qualities of a leader, and we encourage Senior JPO Hillman-Wittwer to continue her great work as it has not gone unnoticed. She is outstanding, excellent and goes above and beyond her duties. She is a great asset to Circuit 20 and to the agency and we are proud to announce that she was selected to be the Employee of the 4th Quarter 2019.

 

sandra burgadoJuvenile Probation Officer Supervisor (JPOS) Sandra Burgado has been employed with the Department of Juvenile Justice since January 1, 2002. She originally started as a juvenile detention officer at the Southwest Regional Juvenile Detention Center (RJDC). On January 2, 2010, she was promoted to assistant superintendent of the detention center. She then transferred to the Office of Probation and Community Intervention-Circuit 20 team on June 30, 2011 as the senior juvenile probation officer for the Cape Coral Probation Office. She was later promoted to juvenile probation officer supervisor for the Cape Probation Office on April 4, 2016.  JPOS Burgado has been a great asset to the circuit. This is due to her great team work and her ability to successfully lead a unit of probation officers. She is always willing to assist and always has a very positive attitude. She meets all challenges head on, and is an excellent leader and supervisor. JPOS Burgado is very deserving of the Circuit 20 Probation 2019 Employee of the Year award.

 

 


jeanette ryderCongratulations to Circuit 3 Unit 101 Secretary Specialist Jeanette Ryder who was recently recognized for her tireless dedication and outstanding customer service to the youth and families DJJ serves.  Jeanette makes it a priority to motivate and empower our youth to make better choices and goes above and beyond her job duties to assist her colleagues and the administration team.  Thank you, Jeanette, for your hard work and enthusiasm in all you do! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

jacqueline woodhamCongratulations to Operations Review Specialist Amy Daglish who was recently named Northwest Residential Services Employee of the Quarter. Mrs. Daglish received this honor during the Northwest Residential Services quarterly program directors meeting in Quincy. Mrs. Daglish was honored with a Star award, certificate, gift card and her very own parking sign.

Mrs. Daglish came to NW Residential Services in August 2014 as a commitment manager and stepped into her current role November 17, 2017.  During her time in Northwest Residential Services, she has brought dedication and determination to ensure valuable services are provided in a safe environment to the youth we serve, and she works to support her assigned programs as a partner.  Mrs. Daglish also promotes teamwork and works to support her team members in Northwest Residential Services.

 

 


 

cadets graduatinThe latest graduating class from Southwest Regional Juvenile Detention Center celebrated their recent accomplishment of passing the state certification exam.  As you can see, the cadets are very happy with their accomplishment.  Shown left to right is Lorriane Fenton, Cherrie Roscioli , Stephanie Thomas, Tyrik Davis, Darrius Medina-D’Amico, Michael Costa and Corey Martin.  These cadets are eager to start off a career with DJJ and work with the youth directly.  We see great things ahead for this class.  Congratulations on becoming a certified staff, Southwest RJDC is happy to have you on board.

 

 


 

rachel riveraCongratulations to Food Service Worker Rachel Rivera from Hillsborough Regional Juvenile Detention Center who was chosen the Support Service Employee of the Month for the Central Region. Ms. Rivera is the backbone to the kitchen at Hillsborough RJDC and the kids love her cooking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Congratulations to the Manatee RJDC Employees of the Month for November and December: Maintenance Mechanic Jason Thompson (November Employee of the Month) and Corporal Zhanice Loney ( December Employee of the Month) . Thank you both for all of your wonderful efforts!

SGT. Jackie Walker, M.M. Jason Thompson & Captain William Figueroa PerezNickevia Chapalet & CPL. Zhanice Loney

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Office of Health Services Attends “The Big Meeting” Hosted by Florida Network

Michelle Hall, Statewide RN Consultant Office of Health Services;Statewide Registered Nurse Consultant Michelle Hall with the DJJ Office of Health Services attended “The Big Meeting,” hosted by Florida Network of Youth & Family Services. Michelle provided training to some of the nurses and supervisors that work in Children in Need of Services/Families in Need of Services (CINS/FINS) shelters across the state.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Residential Youth Attend Gator Bowl in Jacksonville

hastings youth at gator bowlThe youth from Hastings Youth Academy, a non-secure program for boys operated by TrueCore Behavioral Solutions, attended the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl in Jacksonville, Florida. Prior to the game, the youth were provided dinner from Chick-fil-A and were able to engage in a variety of different activities. These activities included flag football, a pull-up contest, and bean bag toss. After these activities, the youth enjoyed watching the game as they rooted for their favorite team. At the program, youth are provided the opportunity to participate in activities that are available in the local community. These activities are conducted with the hope of encouraging the youth to get connected with local agencies that will continue to assist them with structuring their leisure time.  

 


 

pompano youth at musicalFive youth and three staff members from Pompano Youth Treatment Center, a non-secure program for boys operated by Sequel, attended the Broward Center for the Performing Arts to watch “Reggie Harris-Music and the Underground Railroad.” Reggie Harris is a lifetime achievement award winner with The Children’s Music Network. Mr. Harris used multimedia to explore slavery and the quest for freedom in a presentation of story, song and narration. The show was very entertaining and emphasized not taking freedom for granted.  Both the youth and staff enjoyed the performance, and the youth gained better insight into slavery and the Underground Railroad.

 


 

Pennsylvania High School Donates to Florida Youth Crisis Center

pennsylvania high studentsThe Youth Crisis Center (YCC), a runaway program and member agency of the Florida Network of Youth and Family Services, received donations from a Pennsylvania High School.

The Easton Area High School Band and Orchestra, on a trip from their hometown in Easton, Pennsylvania, collected and dropped off donations for the Youth Crisis Center in Jacksonville.

The school’s marching band was the only high school band honored with playing at the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl, and they chose to spend part of their trip giving back to youth in need.

The Easton youth donated an entire trailer full of donations for YCC, including winter jackets, new shoes, deodorant, feminine products, and hair products. YCC staff said the youth brought enough supplies to last them until June.

The band reached out to YCC last October saying they found YCC’s website and resonated with their mission to build a healthier community by empowering young people and families to rise above adversity.  Kudos to these inspiring students from Easton Area High School for turning their amazing opportunity to perform at the Gator Bowl into a way to give back to others!

 


 

ccc trainingOffice of Prevention Services’ Central Communications Center (CCC) Coordinator Jean Hall and CCC Specialists Anna Harley and Brandi Denson provided CCC reportable incidents training at the New Beginnings Youth Shelter in Spring Hill and Crosswinds Youth Shelter in Cocoa to stress the importance to provider staff of timely reporting of incidents that occur at a program. This training also covered the nature of incidents to report and how the CCC process operates.

These trainings occur based on any given program’s number and type of incidents that were reported during the previous year.

The trainings were well received by staff at each program and additional CCC trainings are being planned for the coming months.

 


 

Detention Center Thanks Their Outstanding Volunteers

 

judge and spouse at detention centerOrange Regional Juvenile Detention Center would like to thank Sue McDonald and retired Judge Roger McDonald for volunteering their time. They have helped with sorting books donated by the community and helped to build a library for the youth in the care of Orange RJDC. Judge McDonald and his wife Sue have been coming weekly and devote their time to make sure that all books are appropriate, and to help sort and place the books in alphabetical order. Orange RJDC would like to thank them both from the bottom of their hearts for all they do to foster a love of reading at the center!

 

 

 

 

 

 

kula for karma yogaOrange Regional Juvenile Detention Center would also like to thank Tara Salmieri and the Kula for Karma team for coming by and engaging with the male youth in the honors mod. Kula for Karma has been a great asset to the Orange RJDC. The youth love to participate in the yoga session as a way to ease their minds, bodies and souls.

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

AMIkids Youth Visit the Florida Capitol

 

amikids

AMIkids programs from across the state of Florida descended upon the Florida Capitol recently in recognition of AMIkids Day at the Capitol. More than 100 youth and staff from AMIkids Escambia Boys Base, AMIkids Panama City, AMIkids Pensacola, AMIkids Clay County, AMIkids Gainesville, AMIkids Greater Ft. Lauderdale, AMIkids Jacksonville, AMIkids Manatee, AMIkids Miami Dade North & South, AMIkids Orlando, AMIkids Pinellas, AMIkids Tampa, AMIkids Volusia, AMIkids YES, AMIkids Gadsden, AMIkids Emerald Coast and the Melbourne Center for Personal Growth operated by AMIkids Space Coast were in attendance. Nearly 100 in-person meetings where scheduled with legislators or their aides as an opportunity for the AMIkids youth to share their stories and express appreciation for support of the AMIkids mission. At the lunch program, AMIkids were honored to have speakers such as DJJ Secretary Simone Marstiller, Senator Keith Perry, Representative Clay Yarborough and the Deputy City Manager of Tallahassee Cynthia Barber share words of support and encouragement for our youth!

 

ami students at fsu dormitoryAfter the AMIkids Day at the Capitol, the staff and youth enjoyed a campus tour of Florida State University. The kids sat in on a lecture, toured the grounds, and visited the campus store!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Circuit 6 recently held its first Pasco County Salon Talk.  Salon Talk started in 2017 in Pinellas County as a means to educate nail and hair salon businesses on human and sex trafficking, including what to look for to identify victims and how to help them.  Since that time, the event has grown into a powerful conversation with providers, stakeholders, community members, and survivors on how communities can work together to combat the exploitation of vulnerabilities.  Pasco County is home to one of the leading human trafficking commissions in the state and the drive of the members of the commission is outstanding.  Reform Specialist Adrienne Conwell and Prevention Specialist Pat McGhee partnered with the commission, More to Life, and Pasco Hernando State College to facilitate the event for more than 200 registrants.  The highlight of the event was the expert panel, which included the founder of Redefining Refuge, a program that provides wrap around services for victims of trafficking; a legal representative with an agency that provides free legal assistance to trafficking victims; Tina Levene, prevention specialist with DJJ; and a survivor. Following the panel, another survivor shared her life story and tips on how to help. Corporal Wilkett from the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office closed the event with a call to action. The event was both informational and motivating.

After the event, the chair of the Pasco Human Trafficking Commission approached Chief Probation Officer Melissa Fuller to convey how amazing it was to work with Reform Specialist Adrienne Conwell and make her vision become a reality.  It meant a great deal to the commission to have this event in Pasco County, and Adrienne was instrumental in making it happen.  


embraerYouth from AMIkids Greater Ft. Lauderdale and youth from the Melbourne Center for Personal Growth operated by AMIkids Space Coast recently had the pleasure of a personal tour of the Embraer Executive Jets facility in Melbourne. Embraer is one of the world’s leading executive jet manufacturers. The youth had the opportunity to visit the administrative offices and toured several sample aircraft as well.

 

 

 


Youth from AMIkids Jacksonville recently took part in a four day marine education program. They engaged in National Association of Underwater Instructors (NAUI) certified SCUBA training, a fishing experience, and the Floating Classroom. The kids enjoy a 2-day open water SCUBA certification, then they got to experience a fishing adventure to learn about maritime navigation and responsible fishing practices. On the last day, the youth went on the Floating Classroom with partners at MOTE Marine Laboratory and Aquarium.

 

 


 

ami youth at ht coalitionYouth and staff from AMIkids Greater Ft. Lauderdale recently attended a live performance regarding the risks and dangers of human trafficking by the Broward Human Trafficking Coalition. The youth brought the AMIkids Greater Ft. Lauderdale Food Trailer to provide lunch for the attendees, showcasing their ServSafe® food handling skills.

 

 

 


 

c1 youthCircuit 1 Project Connect Transition Specialist Ron Gaines and Life Coach Joyce Nichols sponsored a youth pro-social event at Strikers Bowling Alley in Pensacola to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The youth were treated to fun activities and bowling while performing some community service and volunteering in the bowling alley.  The youth and their families conducted a round table discussion of the details of MLK Jr.’s famous I Have A Dream speech and shared their views on what it meant to them.  Topics of the discussion involved inclusion, equality, social/emotional awareness, and community empathy.  Special thanks to Strikers Bowling Alley and owner Greg Dupree for providing space for this event and being such a consistent and gracious community supporter. 

 


 

Eckerd Connects Project Bridge, two branches of the Urban League, the City of Ft. Lauderdale, the YMCA, Broward College, and Broward College Alumni gathered in the Sistrunk area of Ft. Lauderdale on Martin Luther King Day to help clean and beautify a park in the heart of the area where children and families frequent daily. The group worked vigorously to mulch the oak trees within the park, to plant at least 100 various perennials, a new oak tree, and three pindo palm trees. This service project was made possible by grant funding Project Bridge received through the Broward College MLK Day of Service Grant. Project Bridge estimated that they would have approximately 50 volunteers; however, the community was overwhelmingly drawn to the mission and vision and they ended up having 90 plus volunteers.

It was truly a sight to see! Upon the initial walk through, the park was sparse and lifeless; however, once the group completed the mission yesterday, new life was all around with the new mulch and the new plantings!

 

eckerd youth on mlk day

 

youth leadersEckerd Connects Project Bridge also partnered with the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, WellBuilt Bikes, and Panera Bread to honor six youth leaders throughout Central Florida this month.

The youth received recognition for the leadership they have shown in their families, their communities, and for the growth they have shown in their lives. Each of the youth received free entrance into Clearwater Marine Aquarium, a meet and greet with the actors of Dolphin Tale, a boat ride to see the dolphins, and a certificate commemorated their leadership.

In addition to honoring youth, the Project Bridge team honored juvenile probation officers who have exemplified leadership within their field as well. These men and women who were honored have shown time and again they are servant leaders and exemplify tremendous passion in helping their youth succeed.

Congratulations youth leaders and congratulations JPO leaders!

 


 

eckerd youthThe wrap-around services the Eckerd Connects Project Bridge team provides help give youth the confidence and the tools to step out of their comfort zones and reach for goals they once thought were unattainable.

Christopher, 16-years-old, enrolled with the Eckerd team to receive support with mentoring, life skills, vocational and work readiness training. The tools he acquired with these sessions encouraged him to pursue acceptance into the ROTC program at his school. He excitedly shared with his Project Bridge team that he was officially accepted following the formal process of a physical fitness test, computer examinations, written essay, and uniform inspection! Way to go Christopher!

 

 

 

eckerd youth taniyaTaniya is a great example of how the Eckerd Connects Project Bridge Career Coaches help youth find and utilize their strengths to meet their goals. At just 17-years-old, this young lady enrolled in work readiness and vocational workshops to help her secure her first job. Through these sessions, Taniya learned  how to highlight her friendly attitude and creativity in interviewing for and being hired for her first job at Panera Bread.

Not only did this young lady achieve employment, she continues to work with the career development team to learn important skills to help her be successful and grow within her new position.

 

 

 

 

 

 


eckerd connects mentor meetingEckerd Connects Project Bridge mentors take mentoring out of the box and specialize in meeting youth where they are in order to help them move strongly toward their life goals.

Cejay is a wonderful example of specialized mentoring. This young man had the opportunity to spend a Sunday with his mentor Tabitha in attending Youth Empowerment Sunday. He was so inspired during the session, he felt moved to share his story with other youth and adults in attendance.

Cejay also had the chance to take part in a life skills session as well as visit IHOP and enjoy lunch with his mentor and peers.

 

 

 

 

 

 


c18 basket driveCircuit 18 Probation recently held their annual basket drive and were able to collect ten baskets full of items, all donated by DJJ youth. Participating youth donated  personal items and staple foods that were then provided to the Nana’s Children’s Home in Melbourne. Nana’s Children’s Home is a nonprofit, faith-based community of 10 houses that take in children, so they have a safe place to live in and call home.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


jpo robinson with youthOrlando Barber Javid Pantojas is making a difference one hair cut at a time. Arranged by Juvenile Probation Officer JC Robinson, Mr. Pantojas has visited two Boys Town Central Florida homes to provide free haircuts for the kids, many served by DJJ and DCF.  The high school students sported the fresh looks to a recent dance. Mr. Pantojas plans to make his visits to Boys Town a regular occurrence. 

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