MONTGOMERY— Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded a $28,000 grant to support a new program aimed at preventing youth crime and recidivism in Lee County.
The city of Opelika is using funds for its Youth Incarceration Prevention Project. YIPP helps youth offenders by addressing issues such as substance abuse, providing educational training so youth graduate from high school or earn a GED and providing job skills training and an opportunity to get a job in Lee County.
“Youthful offenders need strong guidance and positive influences to turn their lives around, and programs like this can have a tremendous impact on their lives and our communities,” Gov. Ivey said. “I am pleased to provide this grant to support the work of the city of Opelika to help at-risk youth gain opportunities for better futures.”
According to Opelika officials, the YIPP program is important to prevent recidivism because on average 83 percent of youth offenders age 16-24 will return to a correctional facility.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grant from funds made available to the state by the U.S. Department of Justice.
“Gov. Ivey believes in helping young people who have previously made a bad choice but want to work toward making a better life for themselves,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “ADECA’s partnership with the city of Opelika through this grant will help make a positive impact throughout the community.”
ADECA manages a wide array of programs that support law enforcement and traffic safety, energy conservation, water resource management, economic development and recreation.
Contact: Russell Sellers, Mike Presley