Statewide, Rhode Island
October and November, 1998
The overall goal of Project Hope is to prevent restrictive placement for transitioning adjudicated youth with serious emotional disturbances and their families by creating a single integrated, community-based system of care. The objectives related to this goal are to (a) reduce recidivism by enhancing mental health supports for transitioning youth, and (b) increase referrals from youth incarcerated at the Rhode Island Training School (RITS, the only juvenile corrections facility in the State) to the system of care, the Children’s Behavioral Health System. Project Hope focuses on youth in RITS because historically these youth have not been the focus of the provider community.
The Project Hope program sites are geographically organized around the eight mental health catchment areas in the State. The project is implemented in each area according to individual community needs. The catchment area for the Pawtucket/Central Falls Project Hope includes the Pawtucket and Central Falls communities. The target population for Project Hope is youth with serious emotional disturbance between the ages of 12 and 22 years who are transitioning back to their communities from RITS. Eligibility criteria continue to require the presence of an emotional, behavioral, or mental health need diagnosable under DSM–IV or the ICD–9–CM equivalents or subsequent revisions; a demonstrated inability to function safely in the home, school, and community; and the need for multi-agency services. Youth who transition from RITS to residential treatment centers are not eligible for Project Hope. Between the time of funding and August 2004, 534 youth have been served by Project Hope. Of those youth, 132 have been served by the Pawtucket/Central Falls region. Between September 2003 evaluation and August 2004, 88 youth were enrolled in Project Hope; 24 of them in Pawtucket/Central Falls.