Discussion Reply should be 500 words each and include correct usage of APA format, your Christian world view, and relevant in-text support for both. Also, include a reference at the conclusion of each response in proper APA format.
Delinquency Prevention and Diversion Programs
My experience working in the field of corrections at both the juvenile and adult systems in various positions (At=Risk Youth Counselor, Treatment Group Facilitator, Correctional Officer, and Probation/Parole Officer) in the last several years, coupled with my educational experience, has led me to believe that two overarching basic factors need to be addressed and included, if possible, in an effective juvenile prevention and diversion program. These two basic factors are an external factor that addresses the juvenile’s environment, and an internal factor, that addresses the juvenile’s health and needs that are protective against delinquency. I believe my assumptions are not only justified through my own observations, but also through research as discussed in the Sherman text. Even with the data in hand, the public or taxpayers are sometimes reluctant to fund these programs. The following discussion board forum will discuss the internal and external factors needed in an effective juvenile delinquency and prevention program, why including such factors can be justified, and lastly, why the public is sometimes unwilling to fund or finance such prevention programs, leading to some foreseeable consequences.
Internal and External Factors to Delinquency Prevention
I believe there many vital internal and external factors of juveniles that need to be addressed in a delinquency prevention program for it to have any chances at being effective. Some of these factors are often very basic, such nurturing love and having a roof over one’s head. As described by Sherman and Jacobs (2011), internal factors include commitment to learning, positive values, social competencies, and positive identity. If these four internal factors are addressed, then other internal subfactors are also concurrently addressed that include achievement motivation, school engagement, integrity, honesty, responsibility, restraint, planning and decision making, self-esteem, and sense of purpose. Major external factors that need to be addressed are support, empowerment, boundaries and expectations, and constructive use of time. If these four external factors are addressed, then other external subfactors will also be concurrently addressed, such as family support, caring neighborhood, service to others, safety, family and school boundaries, neighborhood boundaries, positive peer influence, adult role models high expectations, and creative activities, religious community, and time at home.
Research and Data to Internal and External Factors
Research data supports the need for internal and external factors, such as the ones previously described, to be considered when designing delinquency prevention programs. For example, Garbarino (1999) found that one biggest threat faced by juveniles released from the juvenile justice system is the lack and or availability of healthy social supports. Lerner, Brentano, Dowling, and Anderson (2002) also highlighted the idea of thriving. Thriving is perceived as a health change process in which addresses developmental regulation, which in turn serves to counter many of the behaviors displayed by at-risky youth. According to Sherman and Jacobs (2011), the four major internal and external factors as described previously, were identified in a survey along with other factors conducted by the Search Institute, a non-profit organization out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Search Institute surveyed over 3 million students ranging from kindergarten to 12th grade across the U.S. and identified 40 developmental assets to that are considered vital to positive youth development, further emphasizing the need to address these protective factors against delinquency in delinquency prevention programs.
Delinquency Prevention Programs and Funding
I believe delinquency prevention and diversion programs, like many other programs in the social services field, are underfunded on a consistent basis. Why this is could be for many reasons. Politics and the allocation of resources I believe are the main reasons why such programs don’t receive the funding needed to be sustained on a consistent basis. The public through their lawmakers who represent them in local, state, and federal governments decide what money goes where. Although lawmakers often may ask for data to make sound decisions, many times lawmakers may instead opt to pursue their own agendas or party agendas. Unfortunately, these agendas may not include resources allocated for juvenile delinquency initiatives. As a result, the vicious cycles of revolving within the system for juveniles continue. This in turn my create a long lasting impact on not only the juvenile’s development but also society at large as juveniles may not be able to desist from crime, and may potentially victimize more people.
I believe the Bible very clearly addresses the need for us to take care of and nurture our children in a healthy positive environment for many reasons. The Bible states “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4, English Standard Version). The Bible also states, “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6, New International Version). I believe the Bible, through these verses and many other verses, is telling us that we as adults have a moral duty to nurture children and basically mold them to what we consider, and society at large considers, acceptable standards for human behavior. I believe this moral duty extends to children that do not grow up in a healthy nurturing environment through our day to day jobs and volunteering in events and or organizations that help this need area.
Delinquency prevention and diversion programs tackle many factors in attempting to influence and minimize risky and or delinquent behaviors. Having worked in the field of corrections at both the juvenile and adult system levels for the last several years, along with my educational experience, I believe that internal and external factors of a juvenile’s life, such as commitment to learning, positive values, social competencies, positive identity, support, empowerment, boundaries and expectations, and constructive use of time needed to be addressed when attempting to design new delinquency prevention and diversion programs given literature has shown these factors counter risky delinquent behaviors. The Search Institute’s Survey of over 3 million K-12 students across the U.S. also furthered solidified this belief by identifying the 40 developmental assets that help youth grow up to be responsible, caring, and healthy individuals. Nonetheless, even with data in hand, the public through their representatives are often reluctant to fund such programs and initiatives for one reason or another.
Garbarino, J. (1999). Lost boys: Why our sons turn violent and how we can save them.
New York, NY: Free Press.
Lerner, R. M., Brentano, C., Dowling, E. M., & Anderson, P. M. (2002). Positive youth
Development: Thriving as the basis of personhood and civil society. New Directions
for Youth Development, 95, 11-30.
Sherman, F. T., & Jacobs, F. H. (2011). Juvenile justice: Advancing research policy, and
practice. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.