At-risk youth program being rolled out quickly
First job posting issued
Just days after funding was announced for a youth crime prevention initiative, the first job posting has been issued as officials work to roll out the program quickly.
On Monday in Glace Bay, $ 4.5 million in funding was committed over the next five years for a youth crime prevention program in the Cape Breton Regional Municipality — $ 3.9 million from the federal government through its national crime prevention fund, and $ 600,000 from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality.
Cape Breton Regional Police Sgt. Tom Ripley, who was among the team that worked to get the program established, will now work as a liaison between the program and Cape Breton Regional Police Chief Peter McIsaac.
Ripley said McIsaac will serve as chair of an oversight committee that has been established to oversee the program. It includes senior officials from the police service and the CBRM, as well as representatives from other program partners.
The committee’s first order of business has been to issue a call for applications for the executive director position with the program. The application process will close July 15.
“At that time there will be a selection process and the executive director will be selected,” he said. “If everything goes as planned, the executive director will be in place Aug. 10, and at that time the executive director will then start hiring his or her own staff and start moving forward.”
The program, titled Resiliency Education Leadership Adventure and Youth Service, will target youths between the ages of 12 and 17, with an estimated 24 youth workers to be hired to support 70 at- risk youth each year.
Ripley said many of the youth workers hired will work directly with existing community youth service organizations in a number of communities in the CBRM.
“We have so many not- forprofits that do work with youth now and are doing a great job, so why reinvent the wheel when they’re doing it already,” he said. “Not- forprofits struggle constantly looking for money and trying to make ends meet, so hopefully this will be a way to help them and to reach out to the youth that we’re working with.”
Ripley said the program, described as the largest youth crime prevention program of its kind in Atlantic Canada, is the result of the collaborative efforts of a team of people, including CBRM Mayor Cecil Clarke and council, McIsaac and senior officials with the police, and a variety of community and government partners.
“We have so many notfor- profits that do work with youth now and are doing a great job, so why reinvent the wheel when they’re doing it already.” Sgt. Tom Ripley