Klamath Falls, Ore. – The current percentage of girls in Oregon’s juvenile justice system is 30%, however, a program based in Klamath County aimed at reducing those numbers could soon get a 12 million dollar boost from the state.
‘YIP’ stands for the Youth Inspiration Program, targeting at-risk teen girls from across southern Oregon.
“It’s a motivational program.” Explains Klamath County Juvenile Department Director Dan Golden. “To motivate clients who are ready to make changes in their lives and achieve a footing for themselves in the future.”
Golden adds that efforts are underway to expand the program from 9 to 24 beds. “The Governor has requested 12 million more dollars be placed into the project.”
The project also has support of Klamath County Commissioners.
“The current county commissioners pledged a million dollar match to the program.” Notes Director Golden, pointing out the treatment program has shown results in keeping girls out of prison. “Eight out of ten are successful in leaving our program and not going to a detention or correctional facility.”
The girls come from the Oregon Youth Authority, and the Department of Human Services.
Golden says numbers are growing. “Regionally, we’re filling a big need – there are very few programs for at-risk teenage girls anywhere in Oregon.”
The expansion would also provide a local financial boost, with about 200 construction jobs over a 2 to 3 year period.
The Klamath ‘YIP’ program began in September of 2016.
With 9 beds, they’re able to work with about 50 girls a year.
They currently get about 3 requests for each bed available.