The Division of Youth Services is requesting a $1.3-million budget for fiscal year 2019, according to its administrator Vivian T. Sablan.
The proposed budget for the division under the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, according to Sablan, would allow it to continue with its programs to assist youth and parental communities.
The programs DYS expects to fund under the proposed fiscal year 2019 budget include case management services, congregate meals, counseling services, day care services, children, education and training services, employment services, family planning services, foster care services for children, housing services, independent and transitional living services, information and referral, pregnancy and parenting services for young parents, prevention and intervention services, protective services for children, recreational services, special services for persons with developmental/physical disabilities, special services for youth involved in or risk of involvement with criminal activity, substance abuse services, and transportation services.
“We believe that the programs and services that we provide is all intergenerational, meaning that we cannot just help the victims themselves [or] we cannot just help the juvenile probations themselves. We need to help them and the whole family component,” she said.
Sablan, added that DYS doesn’t only extend its services to the youth but to their parents as well.
“If there is additional need of providing parenting skills and classes or what, we need to address that component as well because even if we are helping the kid but not helping the parents and the kid goes back home, then it is back to square one. It is a intergenerational approach,” she said.
DYS’ purpose is to advocate for the prosperity of children, youth, families, and the community in general. Its focus incorporates educational and preventative activities and services that offer children, youth, and families the chance to learn life skills.
Sablan said DYS held a joint presentation to the Legislature to introduce its 2019 Consolidated Block Grant State Plan.
Three public hearings are also scheduled at three different sites: Tinian Youth Center on Aug. 3, Kagman Community Center on Aug. 8, and Rota’s Sinapalo Youth Center on Aug. 10.