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For Immediate Release:  
For Further Information Contact:
January 31, 2005

Office of The Attorney General
- Peter C. Harvey, Attorney General
Juvenile Justice Commission
- Howard L. Beyer, Executive Director


Sharon Lauchaire

Governor’s Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Committee Awards $55,420 to Parents Anonymous

TRENTON - The New Jersey Governor’s Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Committee has awarded $55,420 to Parents Anonymous. Parents Anonymous will use the funds for their Parents and Adolescents Changing Together (P.A.C.T.) Program, which seeks to ensure that changes initiated in the residential community homes of the New Jersey Juvenile Justice Commission (JJC) are continued when the youth return to their communities.

The JJC, which is the designated planning authority in regard to the allocation of federal grant funds, works with the JJDP Committee to identify appropriate programs, award funds and monitor their success. The JJDP Committee is responsible for the distribution of more than $3 million in federal grants to local and state agencies. The JJDP Committee reviews proposals for programs that will reduce delinquency and create local delinquency prevention programs. Programs that receive funding work with individuals, families and communities to reduce the risk factors associated with delinquency. Programs that demonstrate success are eligible for continued funded for a maximum of three consecutive years.

“The JJDP Committee is impressed with the Parents Anonymous program,” said Committee Chairperson B. Thomas Leahy. “The Committee is pleased to be able to provide fiscal support to an effort that strengthens families by working with both the parents and their children.”

The P.A.C.T. program, which helps both parents and youth establish and maintain positive change, is entering its 2nd year of funding. Participants receive instruction in communication skills, effective discipline, anger management, and instruction in choices and consequences.

“The Juvenile Justice Commission is committed to helping local communities address the specific needs of their young people. We are proud to be part of a partnership that takes a proactive approach to help adolescents and their families,” said Howard L. Beyer, Executive Director, Juvenile Justice Commission. “We know that the earlier we reach out to children, the better chance we have of ensuring that they lead productive lives. We cannot wait until children are in trouble to intervene.”

Created in 1995 to bring together services for delinquent youth, the JJC is the state agency responsible for providing juvenile correctional rehabilitation and parole services. The JJC also funds local prevention programs to divert youth from involvement in the juvenile justice system.

P.A.C.T. is a 16-week program that engages participants in skill building techniques to facilitate healthy family relationships, ties to community organizations, and the development of clear standards of behavior. Community Resources Night, a unique component of this program, brings together local community-based organizations so that parents and youth can have an open discussion about services in a safe non-stigmatizing environment.

The project is monitored by staff from the Program Development and Prevention Services arm of the JJC’s Office of Local Programs and Services.
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