Juvenile offenders in Havre will soon have another option to keep them from incarceration.
The Boys & Girls Club of the Hi-Line, working with Hill County’s Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative, funded by a grant from the Board for Crime Control, will be home to the Youth Reporting Center, starting next month.
The center will be in the Boys & Girls Club, after club hours, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
During this time two staff members and other volunteers will run programs for juvenile offenders, referred to the program through courts.
Assistant Havre Police Chief Gabe Matosich and Hill County County Attorney Gina Dahl have been part of the discussions to get the program going and will be instrumental in getting these kids into these programs.
The programs will provide help with cognitive behavior, career guidance, leadership skills and understanding the consequences of theft and violence.
One of these programs, the reality store, teaches kids money management skills through simulation, with imaginary money needing to be allocated for bills, car payments or non-imaginary snacks.
Tim Brurud said these programs should be good for these kids.
“It’s a teaching tool and a reward,” Brurud said. “It’s gets them some time doing constructive things.”
After a few months, the program will add a community service component on Saturdays, with referred youths working to pay off debts for their offenses
According to the JDAI’s press release, the other programs they have brought to help local juvenile offenders have already been quite effective. Since the initiative started in 2007, the number of juvenile offenders in the Hill County detention center has gone down 58 percent.