A Gift of a Homecoming
John was 15 years old when Mahoning County Juvenile Court initially took him out of his home for physically and verbally aggressive behavior, and for being non-compliant with house rules. In an effort to help change his behavior, the court referred him to a Multisystemic Therapy (MST) Program.
MST Programs are intensive, evidence-based family and treatment programs that focus on chronic and violent juvenile offenders ages 12 to 17 who have a history of arrests. The programs address all environmental systems that impact aggressive behaviors, including homes, families, schools, teachers, and friends. The goal is to prevent out-of-home placement of a youth, or to help facilitate a successful transition back home by integrating mental health assessments, crisis response, behavioral health and treatment, family counseling, and social services.
After one month in the program, John was able to return home, where he continues to exhibit positive behavior. He currently attends school, is getting A’s in his coursework, is compliant with drug treatment court and is substance-free.
A grant from The Hope Foundation made the program possible by providing the resources that allowed Homes for Kids to hire and train four staff members for its MST Program. Homes for Kids is a nonprofit treatment foster care agency that provides a base of treatment foster homes in Mahoning, Trumbull, and Columbiana Counties.