Blog: Reclaiming Futures

Hardin County Convenes Local Leaders at Annual Stakeholder Meeting

Last week, Hardin County Juvenile Court convened its annual stakeholders meeting, gathering leaders from local businesses, churches and agencies to share progress on Reclaiming Futures’ impact through new data, and insight into the future of the program.

Randy Muck, Senior Advisor of Advocates for Youth and Family Behavioral Health, speaks at the Hardin County Juvenile Court stakeholder meeting

Judge Steven Christopher shared results from Hardin County’s participation in a statewide pilot program to study medically assisted treatment for opiate abuse. He noted positive results. Of the 69 percent of people in his family treatment court, zero percent relapsed or experienced recidivism.

The Solution to a 27.47 Ton Problem

April in Dayton, Ohio generally means the winIMG_4366ter weather is starting to break. Snow showers and subzero temperatures are replaced with rain showers and flowers. For some neighborhoods in Dayton, Ohio the break in the weather brings light to a major issue. The issue of illegal dumping is highly visible once the piles of snow have melted away. In some instances, neighborhoods have been left with tons of trash and debris.  For several blocks certain alleyways can be found with couches, mattress, appliances and construction waste.

On April 1, 2015 Montgomery County Juvenile Court hosted its fourth annual community cleanup in the Fairview Neighborhood. This was a community effort, with multiple partners coming together to improve the appearance of one of our city’s neighborhoods.

Reclaiming Futures Names Evan Elkin as New National Executive Director

Susan Richardson has recently announced her plans to leave the position of national executive director of Reclaiming Futures to return to her home state of North Carolina, and we are grateful for her years of excellent leadership. Yesterday, Reclaiming Futures appointed Mr. Evan Elkin as national executive director, effective May 11, 2015.

Maintaining a Critical Eye When Assessing Research Findings

We live in the information age. Reclaiming Futures sites and other jurisdictions engaged in similar focused reform efforts have access to information from multiple sources and disciplines such as: web-sites; journal articles, news; juvenile justice, behavioral health, psychology, sociology, education, social work, medicine and so on.

So how do we critically assess these sources of information? Let’s discuss by using an example.

Data Collection & Evaluation Leads to Juvenile Treatment Court Program Improvements in Lucas County, OH

gainAs the Grant Data Manager for Reclaiming Futures Lucas County, it is important for me to recognize and implement necessary changes to increase the success of our model and its impact on teens in the Juvenile Treatment Court (JTC).

Over the past 24 months at the Lucas County JTC, we have strived to determine how best to use the data collected through GAIN assessments—which stands for Global Appraisal of Individual Needs, a biopsychosocial assessment created by Chestnut Health Systems.

GAIN assessments of JTC clients (our treatment court youth) take place at baseline or initial assessment, three months, six months and 12 months in the program—GAIN I are the initial interviews and GAIN-M90 are the three-month follow up interviews. Questions asked in the interviews address youth perception of the treatment process and program. GAIN Site Profiles of clients include answers and feedback given during the assessments and are kept confidential beyond the use of the treatment team to evaluate the program.

What the data revealed informed significant programmatic changes, in order to meet the needs of Lucas County Juvenile Treatment Court clients. The GAIN Site Profiles validated that a large percentage of youth were engaging in high health risk behaviors, especially regarding sexual behavior. This information flagged for our team that there were gaps of service in our program that needed to be addressed to enhance our impact.

The GAIN data allowed us to determine the specific areas of discussion and education that were lacking in our program—in this case, the need for more education around high health risk behaviors that can lead to unplanned teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.

As a result, our program has started implementing the PREP (Personal Responsibility Education Program) curriculum—created by the Ohio Department of Health—that helps educate staff to become trainers in evidence-based prevention programming. This curriculum is disseminated to staff during regular, existing meetings, where we share data, discuss needs, and establish next steps. The staff then uses the curriculum to educate our youth, which has been successful and engaging.

LaTonya Harris, Project Director at Reclaiming Futures Lucas County, is a strong advocate of the PREP curriculum:

“The Ohio Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) has allowed us to educate youth and dispel some myths about abstinence and sex decisions.
The youth in the group seem to be enjoying the structure of the group and they appear to feel comfortable asking questions without fear of judgment. It's been a nice addition to our program.”

As the Grant Data Manager, I conduct the GAIN-M90 interviews and am able to report what I learn from our clients in regularly scheduled meetings with our treatment team, which will allow us to continually make program improvements. We utilize our meetings as time for me to report what’s working and what’s not, and to discuss how to fill any clear gaps in service.

While I cannot determine any major changes in high-risk health behaviors among our program youth, as we are currently halfway through the assessment cycle, I can share from my latest GAIN interviews that clients have reported receiving appropriate classes and education on these behaviors, demonstrating the improvements we have been able to make.

Image from GAIN website

Drug Facts Can Be Fun! How Montgomery County Juvenile Court Celebrated National Drug Facts Week

Judge Capizzi with the winning youth team on game night

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) led National Drug Facts Week last week, January 26 through February 1, 2015. The week was dedicated to having honest conversations with teens about the harmful effects of drug abuse. Schools and Courts across the country hosted activities to provide youth with scientific facts, research, statistics and emerging trends with drugs. The goal: equip youth with the knowledge necessary to understand that drugs are not a game and they have very serious consequences.

Although drug abuse is not a game, communicating the information to young people can be fun, and I was part of it last week. Montgomery County Juvenile Court hosted a fun activity to get youth the facts and information that they need. On January 27, 2015, the Honorable Judge Anthony Capizzi spent is evening giving his best Alex Trebek impersonation while hosting the 2nd annual Drug Fact Game Night. This wasn’t your normal game of Jeopardy; all categories and questions were developed using data provided by NIDA and related to the harmful effects of drugs.

There were a total of 30 youth involved with Montgomery County Juvenile Court Drug Court in attendance. In addition, there were Natural Helpers, several members from the Parent Advisory Board, and Juvenile Court Probation staff. Parents in attendance from the Advisory Board shared feedback, saying, “we enjoyed seeing Judge Capizzi and the Probation Officers have so much fun with the kids.”

Pairing informative education around drug fact with pizza, trivia and incentives (the first place team received gift cards to McDonalds), Montgomery County Juvenile Court was able to intersect meaningful drug facts with positive experiences for youths. Overall, a success!

National Drug Facts game night at Montgomery County

During this same week, 30 youth involved with Montgomery County Juvenile Court submitted artwork for the Drug Abuse Prevention Poster Contest, intended to get youth involved with pro-social activities like art. Juvenile Court staff encouraged youth to complete artwork at home and school, and provided supplies with assistance for some youth at K12 Art Gallery. The artwork is being submitted this week to Montgomery County Drug-Free Coalition to be judged with the other submissions from schools and programs across the county. The grand prize winner of this contest will received $50.00 cash prize, and a college scholarship of choice to Sinclair Community College, Wright State University or the University of Dayton. In addition, the artwork will be reproduced and distributed at various Coalition events to integrate their great work within the community.

Introducing Candice Moore as New North Carolina Project Director

Formerly a project director for the Crossroads site in North Carolina (representing Surry, Iredell, and Yadkin Counties), Candice Moore will lead North Carolina’s State Reclaiming Futures Office, which currently includes 14 Reclaiming Futures sites in 29 counties.

Moore’s professional experience with Reclaiming Futures stretches back to when she was oneCandice Moore of the original grant writers that helped lay the groundwork for the model in the Crossroads site.

In 2008, with investment from the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust (KBR), North Carolina established a six site Reclaiming Futures pilot. Due to the progress made by these sites, North Carolina established a public-private partnership with support from the NC Division of Juvenile Justice, KBR and the Governor’s Crime Commission to launch the first state office of Reclaiming Futures. In 2013, The Duke Endowment funded four additional sites and KBR funded two more.

As a project director for Reclaiming Futures’ Crossroads site, Moore worked with both urban and rural sites, three different judicial districts, multiple judges and more than 10 providers.

“That really taught me how to maneuver and facilitate multiple sites. My work as a project director showed me how to pull people together and be an effective boundary-spanner,” explains Moore. Prior to her work with Reclaiming Futures, Moore worked on the juvenile justice side as a court counselor, which has also strengthened her collaboration with counselors now.

The state office will continue to be stationed in Raleigh, where Moore will spend part of her time, but she will lead the bulk of the work from her office in Winston-Salem, where KBR and the evaluation team are also situated.

Moore will be accompanied by a new second position that will focus on data management and quality improvement for juvenile justice and Reclaiming Futures in North Carolina.

“My goals for my new position are to ensure that the features of the Reclaiming Futures model are institutionalized across the state of North Carolina—meaning that we set comprehensive training plans, strengthen partnerships among our agencies, ensure fidelity, measure outcomes, and implement evidence-based practices,” explains Moore. “Once we establish that, the long-range plan is to expand the model to all 100 North Carolina counties.”

Below is a snapshot of the impact of North Carolina sites since January 2013:

  • 7,888 (82.6% of eligible youth) were screened using the GAIN-SS
  • 906 youth completed a full assessment (80% indicated the need for treatment)
  • 72.5% of youth in need of treatment successfully initiated treatment. 70% of those initiating treatment did so within the 14 days targeted by the model.
  • 86.4% of youth that initiated treatment fully engaged in services.
  • 35% of these youth discharged from treatment successfully completed treatment and 15% were referred for additional treatment

The improvement in local processes is resulting in positive outcomes for youth. Of youth discharged:

  • 61.3% were involved in pro-social activities
  • 85.3% had one or more positive adult relationship
  • 80.0% reduced or abstained from substance use
  • 71.0% improved mental health functioning

We’re thrilled to welcome Candice into her new role leading the State Office for Reclaiming Futures in North Carolina, and look forward to continuing the positive momentum she and her predecessor Jessica Jones put into motion.

Five Reclaiming Futures Sites Chosen to Implement SBIRT

sites map

As a result of new funding from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, five new Reclaiming Futures sites will pilot an innovative adaptation of Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) for adolescents.

We vetted 20 competitive applications and selected three existing Reclaiming Futures sites to add SBIRT: King County, Washington; Nassau County, New York; and Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.

We also chose two brand news sites to incorporate the Reclaiming Futures model with SBIRT included—Washington County, Oregon, and Chittenden County, Vermont—which brings our total number of sites since inception to 41.

Each of the five pilot sites will serve at least 100 youth over the course of three years. The target will be youth who show mild to moderate levels of substance use—a population that doesn’t often qualify for or seek treatment, but who are at high risk for developing worse substance abuse problems down the road. Clinical Director for this initiative, Evan Elkin, will design an engaging, teen-friendly one to five session intervention tailored for a juvenile justice setting that can be administered flexibly depending on the severity of the youth’s substance use.

Read more from Clinical Director Evan Elkin about the SBIRT pilot.

Reclaiming Futures Top Posts of 2014

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 1.29.44 PMTo celebrate 2014 as it comes to an end, here are Reclaiming Futures top five most popular blog posts of the year!

  1. Watch: PBS Documentary “15 to Life”
    A new PBS Documentary “15 to Life” takes a close look at one man’s story to combat his life sentence after being convicted at age 15. Though Kenneth Young was convicted more than a decade ago for armed robbery, the S. Supreme Court ruled four years ago that a life in prison sentence without parole for a juvenile offender in a non-homicide case was unconstitutional.
  1. For Young People Addicted to Painkillers, the Path Less Taken—Why?
    Mistakenly, many adolescents believe that Rx opioids are safe because they are prescribed by a doctor. But when abused, they can be as potent and as deadly as heroin. In fact, many teens and young adults who abuse Rx opioids move on to heroin abuse. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls prescription drug abuse an "epidemic," and we see it as a public health issue that disproportionately impacts our kids.
  1. The Emotional State of Poverty: A Powerful Photo Essay
    As a native of Troy who struggled with teen pregnancy, drugs and an unstable living environment, Kenneally returned to her hometown after getting sober and studying photojournalism to capture what she experienced as an emotional state of poverty.
  1. End the Culture of Violence and Trauma: The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Wants Your Ideas
    The Juvenile Law Center, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, has released a report Trauma and Resiliencethat illustrates how systems and services can help children and families overcome the trauma they encounter.
  1. Principles of Adolescent Substance Use Disorder Treatment: A Research-Based Guide
    Earlier this month, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), published a guide detailing a drug abuse approach that goes way beyond "Just Say No!" The guide, "Presents research-based principles of adolescent substance use disorder treatment; covers treatment for a variety of drugs including, illicit and prescription drugs, alcohol, and tobacco; presents settings and evidence-based approaches unique to treating adolescents."

El Paso Teens Build Thanksgiving Float that Earns Community Recognition

More than 250,000 people watched and cheered from the sidelines at the annual Thanksgivingangrybirds Sun Bowl Parade in El Paso, Texas, where more than 100 “gaming mania” themed parade floats, marching bands, giant helium balloons, equestrian units and more glided down the street. Among them, the Challenge Explorers Float, whose Angry Birds themed float took home the Governor’s Award for Best Presentation of the Parade’s Theme.

The teens who constructed the Challenge Explorers Float from the ground up are part of El Paso County’s Challenge Academy, a residential Reclaiming Futures program that is part of its continuum of care and an extension of El Paso’s pro-social activities for youth. These young men and women have been through the juvenile justice system, and oftentimes do community service as part of the Academy’s activities. Building a parade float—from concept development to construction to walking in the parade—offered participants the opportunity to get involved in their local community, and collaborate with staff and family.

“Oftentimes these kids have been outcasts most of their lives, and don’t know what it’s like to be a part of something bigger and be successful at it. To start a project from nothing, come together as a unit and produce a product that wins awards is instrumental in building self-confidence,” says Director of the Challenge Academy, Sam Heredia.


El Paso’s Juvenile Probation Department was extremely involved and committed to fundraising, coordinating activities throughout the year like selling popcorn, candy gram sales and ice cream float gatherings to raise money for materials and construction. Families of the teens also got involved as part of the Academy’s family reintegration program, donating supplies and working alongside them to build the award-winning float. The collaborated effort meant that not a dime of taxpayer or county money was spent.

Roger Martinez, Chief Juvenile Probation Officer, explains: “This initiative is an example of our response to the A&E show Beyond Scared Straight. We’re learning more and more through programs like the El Paso County Challenge Academy that positive reinforcement actually has a longer lasting impact. In this case, these teens were acknowledged in a positive way by their community, which has the potential to change their mindsets and lead them to become active community members once more.”

Since its inception in 2008, El Paso County Juvenile Justice Center has embraced Reclaiming Futures’ systems change approach through community collaborations and partnerships, which have served juvenile justice youth and families through continued services beyond treatment. These collaborations have expanded to include collaboration with the local FBI Office, Homeland Security and the Sheriff’s Department, in which members of these agencies volunteer their time to act as mentors to youth in the El Paso County Drug Court Program. Members also volunteer their own time to accompany juvenile justice youth to a local gym to teach alternatives to substance use and promote healthier drug free lifestyles.

Tapping into the creative side of juvenile justice involved youth, El Paso County partners with local artists and businesses for contributions, incorporating art into to the educational curriculum utilized by Delta Academy (El Paso Independent School District) or as a catalyst for these youth to express themselves without the need to engage in substance use.

El Paso County is a great example of strong community collaborations and systems change. We are proud to share their accomplishments and look forward to seeing what they strive for next.

Two Reclaiming Futures Sites Come Together to Celebrate Natural Helpers


A few members of the Lucas County Reclaiming Futures team attended the 11th Natural Helper Recognition Program in Montgomery County, Ohio, last month. The Recognition Program was held at the Presidential Banquet Center and highlighted volunteers in Montgomery County who are working with the court to help teens overcome drugs, alcohol and crime. It was very beneficial for our Lucas County team to see and hear the testimonials of how the Montgomery County team has engaged the faith-based community, as well as other volunteers in the community, by recruiting and training them to become Natural Helpers. The recognition acknowledged that it takes a village, meaning everyone—the court and community—to work towards the common goal of supporting youth to make positive changes.

The keynote speaker, LaShea Smith, spoke powerfully about how Natural Helpers fit into the Reclaiming Futures mantra of “More Treatment, Better Treatment, and Beyond Treatment.” She spoke to how Natural Helpers in the community learn to recognize that there is an “opportunity in every obstacle”.

I joined the Juvenile Justice Fellow, Mike Brennan, the Juvenile Treatment Court Case Manager, Andrea Hill, the Parent Partner, Victoria Kamm, and the Lucas County Youth Advocate Program Director, Sherri Munn, in a trip from Lucas County to Montgomery County to both support the Reclaiming Futures programming and to learn how Lucas County can better engage their local faith based community, as well as others to provide mentoring services to court involved youth.

The Honorable Nick Kuntz and the Honorable Anthony Capizzi, Montgomery County Juvenile Court, and the Montgomery County Reclaiming Futures team did an outstanding job with putting together the Recognition Program, welcoming our Lucas County team, and promoting fellowship with other attendees. There were more than 200 people in attendance. We look forward to visiting other Reclaiming Futures sites in the future.


Reclaiming Futures in the Sea of Juvenile Justice Reform Initiatives

In the national scope of evidence-supported juvenile justice “reforms”, a question is often posed as to which approach or model makes the most sense to potential adopters. Or said another way, can we avoid “model fatigue” by adopting one reform methodology that gets us the best results with the most cost effective strategies?

Family Engagement in the Juvenile Justice System: Still a Long Way to Go

The role of family and mentors in any teen’s life contributes to their success and healthy Reclaiming Futures Programfuture. The role of family and mentors for teens in the juvenile justice system or a juvenile correctional facility is even more critical.

Family engagement in the juvenile justice system is not a new concept, but it is a key component to ensuring at-risk teens stay clear of substance abuse and crime. A recent Juvenile Justice Information Exchange article addresses this need in youth detention centers:

“Experts, supported by a small but growing body of research, say fostering family engagement improves incarcerated youths’ behavior, helps families feel more connected, reduces disciplinary incidents and boosts the staff morale.”

“Moreover, strengthening these connections better prepares youths for a return to the community upon release — most return to their family homes — and reduces repeat offenses.”

While the author Gary Gately does identify some successful programs where family involvement and treatment are front and center, he shares that most systems nationally are more focused on punishment, and oftentimes there exists a contentious relationship between family members and juvenile facility staff members.

Reclaiming Futures’ sites work with a wide variety of community members and resources to contribute to youth success as they remain in their community. Led by the community fellow(s), sites link youth to mentors, education, employment, job training, hobbies, sports, volunteer opportunities, faith communities, and other prosocial activities of interest to youth.

As we’ve seen among Reclaiming Futures sites who have achieved success with this strategy, family involvement and mentors should be closely integrated into a teen’s life for optimal results. For example, Reclaiming Futures in Santa Cruz is taking preventative action with a partnership with Hands on Fatherhood, encouraging fathers and father-figures to create meaningful relationships with their kids. Also, Reclaiming Futures in Snohomish County saw success with its Promising Arts in Recovery program, which added a mentorship and creative arts component to treatment, resulting in substance-free teens who become productive members of their communities.

Gately shares some wonderful examples of successful family integration efforts around the country. Those, paired with Reclaiming Futures’ efforts to connect teens with support systems during and after exiting the juvenile justice system, are pioneering the way to a deeper systemic impact that can hopefully lead to communities and facilities committed to full family and community engagement.

Disaster Mental Health Treatment: Looking Back at Hurricane Sandy

 Flickr user sikeri

Two years ago Hurricane Sandy struck the northeastern coast of the U.S., killing dozens, destroying thousands of homes and affecting the mental health of individuals and communities as a result.

New York State Office of Mental Health (OMH) received a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to deliver counseling services to those affected, but as OMH Medical Director Lloyd I. Sederer addresses, were these services enough?

Sederer explains in his Huffington Post article that the grants provided to communities delivered three services: outreach to impacted communities, education on common disaster reactions and coping skills, and brief crisis counseling. What’s missing from this bundle of services provided is mental health treatment, despite a 50 percent participation rate in existing crisis counseling services provided.

The most intriguing part of the article is Sederer’s proposed solutions, some of which fall right in line with what Reclaiming Futures champions for mental health and substance abuse treatment. Particularly, Sederer recommends Screening, Brief Intervention and Referral for Treatment (SBIRT) as a valuable addition to traditional counseling services, and specifies, “SBIRT has been used in primary care and emergency settings with notable results.”

Reclaiming Futures is designing and piloting a new version of SBIRT for court-involved adolescents in five sites across the country, offering a promising start to the expanded and more robust mental health treatment programs that Sederer refers to—and for a population who, like those impacted by tragedies like Sandy, are vulnerable to the impact of trauma and loss. Evan Elkin, who is developing the Reclaiming Futures SBIRT model, says:  “Court-involved adolescents show high rates of trauma and often show mental health symptoms that fly under the radar until they get much worse. We view SBIRT as a very nimble and effective way to intervene early with large numbers of vulnerable young people who arrive at the doorstep of the juvenile justice system.”

Montgomery County Partnership Targeting Youth with Substance Abuse Issues

Cassandra Russell, national trainer for The Seven Challenges, presents

On Wednesday, October 22, 2014, Montgomery County Juvenile Court, South Community Inc., along with the support of the Ohio Department of Youth Services, hosted a community overview to kick off the expansion of much needed outpatient adolescent substance abuse and co-occurring treatment in the community! South Community, Inc., a private behavioral health group, and Montgomery County Juvenile Court collaborated to bring the program, The Seven Challenges, to the area.

Judge Nick Kuntz and Judge Anthony Capizzi commended Juvenile Court and South Community staff for their efforts and working together to bring evidence-based treatment options to the youth of Montgomery County. The Seven Challenges is an evidence-based model supported by the National Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and is designed to motivate a decision and commitment to change among adolescents struggling with substance abuse.

Cassandra Russell, a national trainer for The Seven Challenges, provided an overview during the community kick off. The initial training and implementation of The Seven Challenges was funded through the Ohio Department of Youth Services. Continued funding is provided through the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Drug Court Enhancement grant until October 2017.

Reclaiming Futures Featured on the Office of National Drug Control Policy Blog

In recognition of National Substance Abuse Prevention Month, I had the honor to contribute to the Office of National Drug Control Policy’s blog. Citing our Reclaiming Futures site in Snohomish County, Washington, I shared why we at Reclaiming Futures believe community involvement is critical to improve mental health and substance abuse treatment, and ultimately build stronger communities around prevention.

Read the full blog post here and contribute your thoughts below.

In Juvenile Justice, Community Involvement is Key to Substance Abuse Prevention

Local artists in Snohomish County, Washington, are contributing their time, tools, and studio space to mentor teens recently involved in their community’s juvenile justice system. For eight weeks, the youth will learn art and photography skills, then produce artwork documenting their lives, families, and communities. Some of their efforts will be featured in local art venues or the local newspaper.

The teens are participants in Promising Arts in Recovery (PAIR), part of Snohomish County’s local Reclaiming Futures program. The goal of PAIR is to establish social and job skills by connecting local artists with at-risk teens who are involved in the juvenile justice system and may be undergoing treatment for substance use or mental health issues. Through programs like PAIR that offer workshops, internships, or job-shadowing opportunities, local professionals are not only helping these young people develop skills necessary to be active citizens, they are helping to rebuild a community around prevention.

Read the full story.

Speak Up! Share Your Story of Recovery from Addiction in an Important Video Contest

Do you know somebody who has an inspiring message of recovery to share? In a special 25th anniversary celebration of National Recovery Month, the Addiction Technology Transfer Center Network (ATTC) invites people in recovery from addiction or mental illness to share their stories in 60-second segments.

The “In My Own Words...” Video Message Contest aims to spread a message of hope by recognizing the accomplishments of recovering Americans, and those who have been instrumental in others’ recoveries. By collecting and sharing video stories of those who have succeeded in recovery, we can stifle the negative stigma of addiction and encourage others to speak out and ask for help.

The contest asks participants to address one of the following two prompts in a 60-second video message:
I’m speaking up about my recovery because…
I’m reaching out about my recovery to…
The “In My Own Words...” Video Message Contest, sponsored in conjunction with Faces & Voices of Recovery and Young People in Recovery, closes October 15, 2014.

Head to the ATTC Network for complete instructions on submitting a “In My Own Words...” video.

Remembering Reclaiming Futures' Passionate Leader, Linda Moffitt, 1953-2014

Linda MoffittReclaiming Futures recently lost a determined leader and friend. Linda Moffitt was project director and former juvenile justice fellow for Reclaiming Futures in Anchorage, and such a valuable driver of implementing Reclaiming Futures in Alaska. She is remembered dearly for her steadfast commitment and passion for her work, and her integrity and generosity that was carried throughout everything she did in life.

Upon hearing the news of her passing, friends and colleagues within the Reclaiming Futures community shared stories of Linda. Below is just a small sample of personal memories and impact that Linda had on so many of our lives:

Jim Carlton, Deputy Director, Reclaiming Futures National Program Office
“Though she retired from the Anchorage Division of Juvenile Justice about three years ago, she remained involved with Reclaiming Futures on the local level as their project director and as a coach on the national level. She was a dear person, a treasured resource for us here at the national program office, and she will be greatly missed by all of us here.”

Master William Hitchcock, Former judicial fellow, Anchorage, Alaska
“Linda Moffitt was a key collaborator in the development of the initial Anchorage proposal for Reclaiming Futures. She officially became a core partner in the national movement in 2003 when the probation fellowship was added. Throughout her career as a juvenile probation supervisor and on into retirement, she remained active in the ongoing development and expansion of the Reclaiming Futures model. Her leadership was not limited only to Anchorage, as she also played a key role on the national level as a coach and frequent participant in national fellowship conferences. Her influence led to the adoption of many of the core principles of Reclaiming Futures within the Alaska Division of Juvenile Justice, both in Anchorage and other offices throughout the state. Her commitment and passion for this work was unlimited. She will truly be missed by all of us.”

Tom Begich, Former community fellow and Project Director, Anchorage, Alaska
“Linda Moffitt was a true friend and a tireless advocate for youth, fairness, and a better world. She devoted her work life and, after her retirement, her personal life to trying to improve our juvenile justice system, provide greater opportunities and hope for young Alaskans and inspired all of us to give just a little bit more, try just a little bit harder, and see the world with grace, humor and joy. Knowing her well these past few years – her and Cande joining us for wine, enjoying great music and talking about our travel plans, our hopes and our aspirations was a joy I will cherish all my days. She will be very, very missed.”

Five Reasons to Contribute to Our Reader Survey

Screen Shot 2014-09-12 at 2.37.47 PMThe content on the Reclaiming Futures website and blog is intended to be informative, inspiring, and useful. Our Reader Survey was designed with you in mind to ensure we’re delivering what you want to see!

Here are the top five reasons you should share your feedback in our quick nine-question survey:

  1. To see the content you want—in the way you want it.

Your feedback will help us provide the most relevant content to your needs and interests. It will also help us reach you on the platforms you prefer, whether it’s through our newsletter, social media or the blog. Your feedback will shape the content we post going forward.

  1. Learn how to get involved.

The survey will help us gauge your interest in expanding the Reclaiming Futures model. It will allow you to share the areas in which you’d like to become involved, so we can make those easily available to you. If you’re interested in bringing Reclaiming Futures to your community, please contact Donna Wiench.

  1. Voice your opinion on what’s missing.

Who do you want to hear from in this sector? What topics would you like us to address more frequently? Tell us where to fill in the gaps!

  1. Share what piques your interest.

There are many aspects to the Reclaiming Futures model, which is implemented in 39 sites around the country. We want to hear which part of the model you'd like us to report on more!

  1. A chance to win $50 Amazon gift card!

If you complete the survey and provide your name and contact information, you’ll be entered into a drawing for a $50 Amazon card.

Our goal for this survey is to make sure we are best serving our audience. The results will help us tailor our content to what you want to see and where you want to see it.

Click here to get started. We appreciate your participation!