The CFYR program celebrated its accomplishments during an online closeout event on Monday September 28, which marked its success to reduce youth involvement in crime and violence in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean. Fifteen communities in Guyana, Saint Lucia and St. Kitts and Nevis were selected as the focus for the program’s activities.
Ambassador Lynch said “the CFYR program has definitely left its mark and has provided valuable lessons of evidence-based methods to reduce crime and violence among youth, families and communities.”
Since the CFYR program began in 2016, over 600 family members in Guyana (160 high-risk youth and their families) received family counselling. Through the program, counselors within the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security worked with families to improve the resilience of the family unit. Over 80% of the participating youth were assessed as having reduced their risk of involvement in delinquent behavior after completing counseling sessions. The Ministry will continue to offer this family strengthening support.
The CFYR program also provided life and employment skills training to over 400 youth and over 200 of these youth were successful at getting new jobs. Partnerships with private sector businesses were central to this area of success.
The project also supported the implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act of 2018 to the Office of Juvenile Justice and other key partners. To this end, CFYR developed and/or revised key administrative and diagnostic tools used by the Sophia Holding Center and the New Opportunity Corps to improve rehabilitation and reintegration support for youth. Following training and monitoring of staff, these tools are now in use at both facilities and have improved their services and efficiency.
Ambassador Lynch thanked the CFYR team for their dedicated work and extended “a special thank you to the many partners in government, private sector and the non-government sector who have consistently partnered with the U.S. government and done excellent work”.