DYS relocates to Chalan Piao
The Department of Youth Services has taken up residence in Chalan Piao, leasing the former Joeten Supermarket.
Department of Youth Services acting administrator Sylvio Ada said the department made the transition to Chalan Piao about two weeks ago and it took approximately four days to completely move into the new office.
One of the many reasons the department decided to relocate was mainly to centralize its services, Ada said.
DYS was formerly located on Capital Hill and had been spread out into six different offices.
According to Ada, being stationed up on Capital Hill was bearable for the first few years, but they soon realized it started to become costly. It cost the department time, money, and resources occupying six separate offices.
Now, the department has one building for all the divisions under the Department of Youth Services including Juvenile Probation, Child Protective Services, Family and Youth Outreach, and administrative services.
Ada told Saipan Tribune that the transition from Capital Hill to Chalan Piao is more convenient for the entire department.
Ada said their new location would give them access to more schools. The location also keeps the department closer to the courts and to Hopwood Middle School and Marianas High School.
The transition to Chalan Piao would also solve the problems of maintenance. Ada said the buildings they were formerly leasing were over 56 years old and they were already starting to fall apart. Because of how old the buildings were, the roofs started to give out, causing leaks in all the buildings, the plumbing gave out, and there were many other issues.
Because of the repairs that needed to be done to the buildings, the department realized that a lot of their funds were going into the renovation of the buildings. Ada said that one building alone cost $24,000 to renovate and they had five other building that were facing the same issues.
With all the offices compacted into one building now, they no longer need to pay for separate renovations, separate phone bills, and separate utility bills, Ada said.
Aside from the amount of money saved from bringing together four different offices into one building, Ada is more pleased with the fact that their services will be more efficiently delivered because of how close they now are to the community.
As of now, the effectiveness of the transition has yet to be seen, but according to Ada, once the school year starts, their new location will come in handy once they start their outreach programs.
The department still has satellite offices in the northern part of the island so that it can continue to monitor the children and schools located there.