Colchester Youth and Social Services provides:
Positive Youth Development Programs
The goal of the Youth Service Bureau is to provide a variety of services that will offer youth the opportunity to develop in a positive way so that they may reach their full potential as healthy members of society. Our programs aim to give young people the chance to build skills, exercise leadership, form relationships with caring adults, and help their communities. We believe that positive growth & development are fostered when adolescents develop a sense of competency, a feeling of connectedness to others, a belief in their control over their fate in life and a stable identity. This framework places value on young people regardless of their situations and emphasizes their strengths and potential. Some of the programs we offer include: youth center drop-in, community service programs, leadership training, social skill
development, parenting classes, substance abuse education, and youth employment programs. Throughout the year we also offer a variety of cultural and recreational programs that provide young people with opportunities to try new experiences, find a hobby, express themselves artistically, or just have fun!
Youth Center Drop-In programs
We strive to create a positive peer experience during drop-in hours by providing a safe, drug and alcohol free environment where kids can play games and sports, get homework help, be creative and social.
Throughout the year we offer a variety of activities that are designed to enhance social, physical and/or artistic development and provide young people with safe, positive, alternative activities that they can pursue during their free time. Most of these programs occur during the summer and other school vacations and are generally provided for youths in grades 4-12.
We offer a variety of programs that provide parents and caregivers with opportunities to develop skills, increase knowledge, learn about youth trends, get support from other parents and ask questions. Topics include: child abuse prevention, drug trends, positive parenting, etc.
Community Service Programs
We are proud to offer a variety of programs that not only help teens kids improve the world around them, but at the same time help them reap many personal benefits. Studies show that by participating in community service programs youth gain a better understanding of others, increase their self-esteem, and are 50% less likely to abuse alcohol, cigarettes, become pregnant or engage in other destructive behaviors. Also, students who have a strong commitment to volunteerism and community service are known to make the best workers and most dedicated students. When young people learn to serve others they become empowered and grow up knowing that they can make a difference in the world. Whether you are looking for a chance to do a good deed or need to complete community service hours, we have just the program for you. We provide
many opportunities for service including: Teens in Action and Youth Action Council for grades 7-12, and Youth Force Group for grades 6-8. Projects include: visits to soup kitchens and homeless shelters, animal shelter clean-ups, Special Olympics, and much more.
Early intervention programs for youth and families experiencing distress including education, referral, groups and diversion services.
Curriculum Based After School Programs
Our structured after school programs are designed to help young people who need extra support, additional skill development, academic tutoring and opportunities for success. The youth who participate in these group are usually referred to the programs by school counselors and teachers. These groups last from 8-weeks to 6 months and generally have 8-12 members.
School Based Programs
Each year we work closely with school counselors and administrators to assists with the social and emotional needs of students. We do this by providing support groups and skill building programs for all grade levels. Groups include: Peer-to-Peer Mentoring, Divorce Support Group, Leadership Skills, Anger Management and Social Skill development.
Juvenile Review Board
The Juvenile Review Board (JRB), in conjunction with local and State police, offers meaningful alternatives to the Criminal Justice System and works to reduce the number of repeat juvenile offenders in Colchester. These alternatives are aimed at promoting responsible behavior and solving problems that may be at the root of the behavior. The Review Board will attempt to develop personalized intervention strategies that facilitate solving the problems of the youth and his/her family and promote responsible behavior. ~These alternatives will include, but not be limited to: counseling, family counseling, restitution, community service, and educational programs. ~
We provide referrals to other public and private agencies to help with mental health issues, FWSN issues, substance abuse treatment, etc.
Our Social Service programs are designed to assist individuals and families in meeting their basic needs and are designed to encourage personal responsibility, foster independence, and promote self-sufficiency while maintaining dignity and privacy.
- Food Bank
- Mobile Food Pantry
- Energy Assistance
- Fuel Bank
- Assistance with completing forms and applications
- Holiday Baskets and gifts
- Back-to-school supplies
- Summer lunch program for program participants