As your child begins the commitment process with DYRS, you play a pivotal role in his or her journey. DYRS is intentional about respecting youth and families by fostering active engagement every step of the way.
You and your child will be invited to complete a comprehensive assessment with a member of the precommitment team.You will then be invited to an orientation session for caregivers, where a DYRS Family Engagement Specialist will explain the different types of placements (also referred to as the Continuum of Care) at DYRS, as well as what your child’s rights and yours are throughout your child’s commitment. The Family Engagement Specialist will further explore how you can maintain an active role in your youth’s rehabilitation. Lastly, you’ll be given additional information to take home and refer to throughout your child’s commitment.
You and your child will be invited to a Team Decision Meeting (TDM) with a DYRS Care Coordinator and other service providers. This is the most important meeting for you to attend, as it will begin to shape the plans for your child throughout his or her commitment. During the TDM, insight and input from you and your family on your child’s strengths and challenges will drive the creation of a tailored Individual Success Plan (ISP). One size does not fit all. Your child’s plan will be as unique as he or she. Your child will live at home or in a secure community or residential facility while committed to DYRS and receiving services. You should expect to be in frequent contact with the Care Coordinator assigned to your child, as well as other DYRS team members and/or partners such as a DC YouthLink service provider and/or Credible Messenger.
If your child is placed in a secure residential facility, they will live in a gender-specific age appropriate setting. You will be able to connect with a Juvenile Justice Institutional Counselor (JJIC) who will communicate with you about your child’s day-to-day experiences in the facility.
You will receive regular updates on your child’s progress, and will be able to call and visit your child at scheduled times. You will be involved in future TDMs and able to participate in a range of activities to encourage you and provide support throughout your child’s commitment and their safe return home. All DYRS team members are a resource and will strive to maintain a loving, safe, and secure environment for every youth in our care.