New Program Aims to Keep Young Men Out of Prison

June  19, 2014

      Life without the probability of prison.

      That's what the Safer Foundation wants to show young men through its new after school program, called IMPACT. It celebrated the new service this week with an open house.

      Director Sue Davison says the Scott County Juvenile Court Services refers men, ages 16 to 21, who are at-risk of going to prison if their behaviors don't change. IMPACT can serve up to 12 clients over three to six months. Davison says, right now, eight young men receive group and individual counseling. 

      "We have a family therapist that we contract with that will be working with our families and looking at those dynamics.  We'll be engaged in therapeutic recreation activities and really trying to create more healthy alternative activities engage them so that when they leave our program, hopefully they'll have some new interests and hobbies that they can engage in."

      Davison says the program started in April, and currently runs weekdays from 3 to 8 pm. She says partnering with local leaders and the St. Mark Lutheran Church in Davenport has been beneficial. 

      "You know, it'll be fun to have people from the congregation maybe come in and share a special recipe and the kids help them make it, so we're really excited that we're up and going, and hopefully we'll have a lot of success."

       The Safer Foundation aims to reduce recidivism, and IMPACT is its latest effort. Davison says the organization has a three-year contract with the State of Iowa to run the program.