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The mission of the DCF Office of Adolescent Services (OAS) is to support adolescents in the transition to adulthood to achieve economic self sufficiency, interdependence, and engage in healthy life-styles by:

  1. Ensuring that services provided through the Department of Children and Families are coordinated, effective, meet best practice standards, are youth driven, and adapt to the needs of families and communities,
  2. Developing linkages with other service providers in order to create a more equitable and seamless service system, and
  3. Providing leadership and policy development in the field of adolescent services.

The objective of our work is to develop a robust service system that seeks to provide the services and supports the youth need in a timely manner, including:

  • Safe and stable housing,
  • Transportation,
  • Job training and education,
  • Financial stability,
  • Life skills and other training to encourage positive development,
  • Physical and mental health care,
  • Connections to caring adults to assist with life decision and provide emotional support,
  • Youth engagement activities in program and communities, and
  • Preparation for economic self-sufficiency, interdependence, and healthy life-styles.

Our work is guided by the principles that adolescent services should:

  • Treat all youth with respect,
  • Empower youth to engage in planning regarding their own lives, as well as service planning within their communities to the extent that it is developmentally appropriate,
  • Use a strengths-based and culturally competent approach,
  • Assist youth in developing protective/positive attributes and reducing risk behavior,
  • Be flexibly structured to meet the individual needs of youth,
  • Promote healthy connections to family and other caring adults,
  • Affirm the ability of all youth to succeed, but at their own pace and with support,
  • Be coordinated, accessible, and endeavor to meet established and emerging best practice standards, and
  • Use a data driven, outcomes focus.