A local youth diversion program had a lot to celebrate Tuesday. The Harbor celebrated its second year, along with the opening of a second location to help kids stay out of the juvenile justice system.
The Harbor is located at 861 N. Mojave Road. The Harbor is a one of a kind program in the valley with a 95 percent success rate. That means only 5 percent of the kids who come through the doors continue to get into trouble.
“I think that that’s what our youth needs today,” said Chantell Carr, a parent. “They need to know that we care.”
Carr tends to get choked up when she talks about what The Harbor has done for her and her son, Joseph. The 17-year-old was caught lying to a police officer about his age, but instead of getting arrested, he was brought to the youth diversion program.
“He would have been going through the juvenile court system,” said Carr. “He would have been in the court system.”
During a celebration Tuesday of The Harbor’s 2nd anniversary and expansion, Carr was joined by education leaders, politicians, and others. However, she made sure she thanked a man in the crowd who worked one-on-one with her son.
“He’s just awesome; he came at my son in a way that he understood him,” Carr said.
The man Carr spoke so fondly of is Robert Lane. Lane is a family assessment specialist with The Harbor.
“When I talk to the kids, I try to think of them like what it was like when I was their age,” Lane said. “How can I help them out the most?”
The Harbor opened its doors in 2016 as a pilot program. It was initially located next to the juvenile detention center and later moved down the road to an old Metro training facility near Mojave and Washington.
At the beginning of this year, the harbor expanded its services to 24-hours a day. To date, The Harbor has helped almost 5,000 families.
It was made possible through funding allocated during the 2017 legislative session.
The almost $2 million are also going to opening a second location near Jones and Charleston.
“I think that The Harbor is a safe place for children,” Carr said. “I think that The Harbor cares about our children.”
The second location is open seven days a week from 8 a.m.-10 p.m. The first location near Mojave and Washington is currently open 24 hours a day.