Get IN Chicago is currently collaborating with more than 20 agencies to strengthen mentoring and CBT programs and create a rigorous, central intake and case management system for acutely high-risk youth in Austin, Englewood, Humboldt Park, North Lawndale, Roseland, South Shore, and West Englewood. The initiative is called Supporting Youth through a Network of Care (SYNC).
SYNC aims to increase the number of impactful community-based programs and support acutely high-risk youth to make successful transitions to adulthood. To get there, Get IN Chicago is investing in capacity building, evidence-based program models, and strategic partnerships meant to identify, recruit, and retain acutely high-risk youth in programming.
Here is a model of how the different components of the SYNC initiative will work together. Below, the teal boxes are trainings that our partner organizations started during the fall. Service is set to start in 2017 and will take place in community locations in the neighborhoods listed.
By utilizing teams of case managers, mentors, and therapists, SYNC will expand a young person’s network of support and increase his or her positive connections to school and community. SYNC programs are associated with short-term outcomes such as improved school engagement and interpersonal skills and reduced involvement in risky behaviors. Long-term, SYNC programs aim to reduce the likelihood of adverse outcomes in adulthood such as violent behavior or criminal actions that lead to involvement in the justice system, while also increasing hope for the future.
As an example, here is how a fictitious young person (“Jarell”) might walk through an experience with SYNC, starting with a referral network (“Justice League”) and moving through programs in his community (Austin). This shorthand guided our early discussions of the initiative.
While they are difficult to reach, acutely high-risk youth possess a great deal of potential and deserve our attention. We look forward to sharing more about SYNC and the steps we are taking to work with this group of youth in the coming months.
Archive posts about the initiative, including service provider partners, can be found here: SYNC Archive