Offense: DrugsOvercoming Addiction Through Cooking
A 17-year-old male was referred to the program by his high school on a marijuana charge. He suffered with lack of self esteem and was diagnosed severe bi-polar disorder. One of the requirements in his Reparative Agreement was to build and showcase his culinary skills by planning, cooking, and serving a dinner for the Restorative Justice Advisory Council. He completed the menu, planning, purchasing, cooking and serving of the meal with the assistance of two college interns interns. He received accolades for his effort. This was a great boost to his self-esteem. He also formed a bond with the two interns. He asked them upon completion of the meal, “Will I see you again?”Learning the dangers of substance abuse
A single mom noticed behavior changes in her son (a high school sophomore), and that he was socializing with strange friends. One evening she smelled something that could have potentially been “pot” and called the police. Her son was arrested and referred to Court Diversion. Through his contract of consequences, we were able to educate the mother and son around the dangers of substance use and help them get back on track. The boy’s grades improved, he joined a peer mentoring program at local recreation center, and he also created an impressive brochure for teens to warn them about the dangers of experimenting with alcohol and other drugs.
When the son’s case was successfully closed, the mother wrote the following in a note to our program director: “Thank you so much. I don’t know what I would have done without your program. The night when I had to call the police was an unimaginable nightmare, and over the past four months, I feel like I have control over my family again.”Troubled to Appreciative Teen
A young lady, age 15, had significant drug (prescription) and alcohol issues was sent to diversion to complete the Challenge course. She completed the Challenge course and as a follow up, the parent and director decided that she needed to continue to meet with Diversion. This young lady, very stubborn and resistant to any help, didn’t agree. She did however continue to come and the Diversion worker. As with many young addicts, living in a world of denial is the norm. At the end of her 5-month program, she wrote the following note as she agreed to begin clinical treatment:
Please don’t ever give up on any person or family no matter how many problems they have or how much they don’t want to be helped or how much someone else doesn’t want to be helped… I know how it feels to be helped and then push that person away that’s helping me and wish I wouldn’t have because I wanted to be helped even though sometimes I didn’t always see it. So even if a person doesn’t act like they act, like they want to be helped deep down inside they do want the help and how ever much they push you away keep trying to help because I don’t want anyone or any one else’s family to feel or go through the things me and my family did. SO PLEASE PROMISE YOU’LL NEVER GIVE UP ON ANYONE OR THIER FAMILY… Give someone else the help that I pushed away.
Thanks. Love, A caring friend
A young lady was referred to Diversion from a local police department after getting arrested for possession of marijuana. She met with the program’s Restorative Justice Panel and together a contract was formed. She was asked to do a community service project in which she used her artistic talent and attend the Cannabis Education class. Together with her case manager, they found a local agency which needed Christmas decorations for the families that they provide for. She successfully completed her contract, and is looking forward to attending college in the fall.