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New Girls Group Inspires Local Youth

           Beginning in October 2014, the Juvenile Intensive Case Management (JICM) program at Community Missions will expand to include a new branch, Females Offering Resiliency, Confidence and Empowerment (FORCE). The FORCE group is designed to provide female youth in Niagara Falls with the Voices Program, which was created to address the needs of adolescent girls by providing encouragement, structure, and support while exploring topics that directly affect them. These topics may include families, substance abuse, gender, and interpersonal violence.

It was found that there was a need for a program specifically for girls since programs are often designed for, and based on, the experiences of males, but are applied to females. According to directors of the program, this disregards the unique experiences of girls and discourages them from expressing themselves. The FORCE program acknowledges that gender makes a difference in how individuals react to stressors in their lives. Therefore, FORCE strives to bring girls together to explore the differences and similarities between one another, to express themselves in a safe and supportive environment, and to learn new skills while also providing paths to successful and fulfilling futures.

Activities which youth may participate in as members of FORCE include: job shadowing, job and career fairs, tours of colleges or vocational schools, cultural events such as museums or historical tours, informative presentations, and volunteer work. Graduation ceremonies to acknowledge efforts and personal growth will be held at the end of each nine-week session. A maximum of eight young women between the ages of 14-17 will participate in each session, and meetings will take place in the youth's school. Directors of the program hope that it will provide youth with encouragement in the areas of self-worth, confidence, resiliency, connectedness to their community, and behavior at home and school.

 

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By The Numbers...

In 2016, Community Missions provided:

11,104 nights of shelter

89,366 meals

6,744 individuals with clothing

2,295 care days in Youth Services

46,888 care days in Recovery Services

73,994 care days in Housing Services

182 opportunities for Faith Development


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