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Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice prepares for youth celebration for Valdosta Youth Center

Posted at 7:49 PM, Nov 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-04 19:49:34-04

VALDOSTA — The DJJ is celebrating the youth and workers of the Southwest Keys Evening Reporting Center in Lowndes County.

This program was made to provide structure, a safe space and provide supervision.

Tyrone Oliver, Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice says they started this program at the height of the pandemic last year and it's great to see how it impacted everyone involved.

"So you know, we save one kid, you know, that that's a win. And so I think 22 out of the 39 have successfully completed the program. And so that's, that's big, you know, it prevents them from going deeper into the system. So they don't have to come to us, they don't have to go to the adult system."

So far, the Southwest Keys program has a 88% success rate and is hoping to get more people involved.

The goal is to keep the youth engaged in pro-social learning opportunities and they must be enrolled for 90 days and referred by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice.

The program hours are 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday during the school year.