Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $749,993)
Despite strong existing reentry efforts and behavioral health services in Hampden County, MA, a group of high-risk, violent young offenders continues to demonstrate extremely violent behavior in the community, accompanied by disturbingly high recidivism rates. Many of these young people have and continue to experience extensive trauma—trauma that is left unaddressed by the systems designed to serve them and is repeated across generations. These young people are often returning from incarceration are returning to communities without resources designed to meet their unique needs, and more often than not, they can see no clear path to successful reintegration. Their chronic and ongoing trauma often results in their becoming trapped in their own fear, stuck in a state of “fight or flight” that cannot be broken.
Through the Hampden County Trauma Stabilization Project (HCTSP), Roca, the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department (HCSD) and Clinical Support Options (CSO) will work to help this young people address this trauma and access the critical behavioral health care services they desperately need. HCTSP will serve 150 young men returning to Springfield, Holyoke, Chicopee and the surrounding communities from the Hampden County Houses of Correction. HCTSP will work both during incarceration and after release to offer opportunities for sustained, long term behavior change that will result in a reduction in criminal thinking, criminal behaviors and recidivism and an increase in sustained employment.
HCTSP will offer a reentry solution that is built around the understanding that in order to support sustainable behavior change we must provide accessible and appropriate behavioral health supports for our young people who are the least ready to engage in clinical care. HCTSP will provide young people with long-term intervention services accompanied by community based and more traditional behavioral health care and crisis support -including the expansion of behavioral health services for young people on the MAGIC pod; enhanced, cognitive behavior-change programming while incarcerated; and, the delivery of a long term, cognitive-behavioral intervention coupled with intensive behavioral health care, as appropriate, in the community.
HCTSP will also provide training for our criminal justice partners in Rewire CBT (Roca’s unique approach to the delivery of CBT) and Rewire4 (an abbreviated version of CBT designed for criminal justice professionals). In addition, Roca and its partners will create a data driven action plan within 6 months of final budget approval as well as a final report at the end of the project.