Press Release - July 28, 2003
Office of the Commissioner of Probation
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|July 28, 2003
Holland, Director of Communications
Offenders Learn History of Boston Harbor Islands
As They Engage in Community Service Projects
County Juvenile offenders enrolled in the Juvenile Resource
Center, a Community Corrections program of the Office of the
Commissioner of Probation, are learning about the history of
the Boston Harbor Islands, its plants and wildlife while also
participating in community service projects as part of their
probation. The Juvenile Resource Center Harbor Island Program
was launched this summer as a pilot project.
program has an 'Outward Bound' approach. It combines
education and meaningful hands-on community service
in a natural setting," said Kevin Duggan, Statewide
Supervisor of the Trial Court Community Service Program. "I
would like this program to continue each year."
week, this summer, up to 24 offenders are ferried
by a 40-foot Navy boat to Georges Island, one of
the 34 Boston Harbor Islands maintained by the Metropolitan
District Commission (MDC). The boats are furnished
and operated by the MDC. The youth, who range in
age from 13 to 17, have mowed and raked a grassy
area the size of two football fields and weeded and
planted flowers and shrubs at George's Island, an
island that served as a fort in the 1800s. In recent
weeks, the teens cleaned and spruced up the area
for a historic re-enactment. Park Rangers serve as
the offender's educational guides to the islands.
The teens have learned about the history of the fort
at George's Island, how to identify plants and wildflowers.
They have also been introduced to the writings of
Edgar Allen Poe. The program participants' offenses
range from armed robbery to stolen cars to drug crimes.
The offenders are supervised by a four-person team
which includes a Probation Officer in Charge, a court-services
coordinator from Community Corrections, a staff person
from the Juvenile Resource Center, and a youth worker.
have seen a lot of changes in the boys since they
first started the program. They are happy to be outdoors
and when they complete a community service project,
they have a real sense of accomplishment. I did a
poll and only three of the offenders had been on
a boat before. The program brings a little variety
to their lives," said John Glennon, Court Services
Coordinator at the Trial Court Community Service
Juvenile Offender said of his participation: "It's
interesting. I would rather be outdoors doing this
and learning something new."
Massachusetts Probation Service is a department of the
Massachusetts Trial Court. There are 12 Superior Court,
70 District Court and 12 Probate and Family Court probation
offices throughout the Commonwealth. Probation's Juvenile
Court system includes 11 divisions which represent every
county in the state. The Office of the Commissioner of
Probation (OCP) serves as the central administrative
office for the state Probation service and the Office
of Community Corrections which operates 23 Community
Corrections Centers throughout the state.