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Camden County, NJ -- On Oct. 25, all seats for the 5:30 Camden County, N.J. The Hate U Give showing will be reserved for Youth Advocate Programs (YAP), a community-based alternative to youth incarceration and institutional confinement. The Hate U Give is based on Angie Thomas’ young-adult novel about a 16-year-old girl who witnesses the shooting by a police officer of her close friend.
Shootings by the police of unarmed African-Americans are an all-too-common occurrence and topic of discussions on disparities in a justice system YAP youth know firsthand. Following the screening (at 711 Evesham Rd, Somerdale, N.J.), YAP will host a trauma-informed discussion with program youth and their Advocates about issues surrounding the film.
As an alternative to out-of-home placement, YAP matches youth with paid mentor-Advocates who live in the same neighborhoods as the families the nonprofit serves. These Advocates help YAP youth identify their individual strengths and working with them, empower them by helping them build individual toolkits with resources they need to succeed in school and life. Meantime, YAP also works with the youths’ family members to help them identify their strengths and the tools they need to ensure that there’s a sound foundation for them and their children for years to come.
As part of a strategy to scale its programs and expand beyond the 23 states it serves, YAP is creating innovative pilot programs related to system change, racial and social justice and its Safely Home Campaign, a nationwide movement to safely care for all youth and young adults in their home communities and with their families by reducing and preventing unnecessary out-of-home placements and creating safer, more supportive communities for at-risk young people. YAP is also addressing growing community needs such as families dealing with addiction, youth aging out of foster care and youth impacted by sex trafficking.