The Chris Sturmfels Youth Centerprovides residential alternative to incarceration for boys and girls between the ages of 10 and 17 who have been arrested (but not convicted of an offense) and cannot go home.

The facility is named for a beloved Connections’ counselor and administrator who was killed  along with a colleague in an auto accident on Febraury 25, 2010,

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Alternatives to secure detention are critical, allowing low- to moderate-risk young offenders to attend their school, spend time with their families, receive counseling and services, and remain connected to their communities — a link that can be broken if they are placed in a secure detention facility.

We want the young people we serve to continue to go to their own schools, remain on their sports teams, and participate in leisure activities at community locations such as the Police Athletic League Center and the Boys and Girls Clubs.

Since opening in 2011, the center has served upwards of 200 young people a year. None of the children housed at the center have been charged with a violent crime.

The center provides structured activities and supervision 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Residents receive supportive counseling, primary medical and behavioral health services, educational services, recreation, drug and/or alcohol treatment, and family interventions, including family-oriented recreation and family therapy.

The program also provides life skills training and transportation to court, school, and other required appointments. Residents who are not able to attend their home school because of past problems receive home-based instruction at the center.