New Directions

New Directions is an innovative program targeting youth in Yonkers between the ages of 10 and 17 years who are at risk of PINS and/or are truant. Elements of the program include: family support services, peer groups for youth at risk for juvenile crime and mediation sessions between parents and teens.

New Directions is designed to reduce truancy and delinquent behavior, promote higher education rates as well as to improve family functioning for at-risk youth and their families.

After an initial psycho-social assessment, goals and objectives tailored to the individual family are established, outside referrals are made if necessary, and the family is referred to two programs: Peer Groups and ADAPT. Each component is part of a custom-tailored Action Plan.

Peer Groups

This weekly group focuses on communication, anger management, HIV/AIDS and pregnancy prevention, risk reduction techniques and social skills.

ADAPT (A Different Approach for Parents and Teens)

ADAPT provides mediation sessions where parents and children work on their differences together. Parents and children are encouraged to communicate clearly and specifically about the issues that are causing conflict and create an agreement/contract detailing the ways they are going to manage the situation. Both parent and child are given an opportunity to have a voice and be heard.

New Directions Follow-Up

Families participating in New Directions come together on a quarterly basis to discuss their progress toward their goals and objectives; at this time modifications to the initial plan can be implemented.

By combining family support services, risk reduction techniques and social skills for teens and mediation sessions between parents and teens, New Directions gives families the tools they need to strengthen their family unit. Youth will learn to take more responsibility for their behavior and make healthier choices, they will be encouraged to continue their education and successfully move forward onto graduation.

Yakira Cabrera, Program Coordinator
(914) 964-6767


Partial funding provided by the United Way for the Participate to Graduate initiative.