What is Community Capacity Building?

Community capacity building refers to efforts to strengthen the ability of local community organizations to support, serve and supervise young people with juvenile justice system involvement as a strategy for reducing reliance on youth incarceration.

Jurisdictions that engage in community capacity building build partnerships between system and community stakeholders to develop community-based alternatives to incarceration.

So Many Answers That I Need

Guest post by Chantilly Mers-Pickett   Last summer I attended a panel discussion organized by Community Connections for Youth (CCFY). CCFY is an organization in the South Bronx that works really hard to provide alternatives to incarceration for youth. I remembered a grandmother on the panel who spoke about her grandson turning 18 in a detention center. […]

Raising the Age Right in New York

New York is one of only two states left in the nation that automatically charges any youth who has committed any crime as an adult at the age of 16. A growing movement in New York is calling on lawmakers to raise the age of criminal responsibility in New York. Raising the age should be coupled, however, with an additional approach: building community capacity to engage young people whose behavior brings them to the attention of the justice system.

Youth are Assets

By Ruben Austria, Executive Director The need for self-improvement springs from an inner conviction to pursue our dreams.  Developing our gifts and talents makes us feel more alive, drives us to push through obstacles in pursuit of our vision.  Efforts centers on our flaws quickly become demotivating. Youth – especially youth in the justice system […]

Amelia Heads UP

In 2002, Amelia Frank became captivated by the leadership and initiative of the young people at a United Playaz meeting close to her Mission YMCA post in San Francisco.  Founder Rudy Corpuz was speaking with youth about a domestic violence awareness event called “Silence the Violence”.  Teens from all different backgrounds and neighborhoods were coming […]

Know Your Rights

As the controversy over New York’s stop-and-frisk policy continues to make headlines, youth in New York City would do well to listen to Chino Hardin.  In November, Chino held a Know Your Rights workshop for Bronx youth and their families. The session taught attendees how to deal calmly, wisely, and assertively with law enforcement during […]

Change from Within

CCFY Executive Director Ruben Austria’s been named a member of NYPD’s 40th Precinct Community Council and elected to its Executive Board. Though Ruben has been an outspoken critic of law enforcement practices that over-criminalize young people, he looks forward to working to achieve peaceful collaboration between community members and police officers. As a resident of […]

Halloween with the 40th

Amidst the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the Mott Haven neighborhood found a reason to celebrate.  The 40th precinct community affairs officers organized a Halloween Block Party.  The event featured a bounce house, face painting, music, carnival games, a magician, and a candy giveaway.  Jeannette Bocanegra, Caitlin Anderson, and Jennifer Cepero attended the celebration on behalf […]

Walking for a Cause

CCFY’s Family and Community Organizer, Jeannette Bocanegra, joined Affinity Mentor Abdul Malik Talib and one of our SBCC families to take a stand against breast cancer.  The group walked with the local correctional association in honor of Demetria Frampton, who is herself a survivor, retired correctional officer, and grandmother.  The Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk was […]

Report Release Brings Families to the Table

Probation and ACS Commissioners attend the New York release of the National Families Report.  Family testimonies prompt Schiraldi to convene Parent Advisory Board to meet monthly with Probation leadership.   National Families Report On September 10th, Justice 4 Families, in partnership with CCFY and 12 nonprofit organizations across the nation released Families Unlocking Futures: Solutions […]