Juvenile Detention Center

Special Programs

Project BARC

Animal Assisted Therapy Program - BARC

In 2010, the Building Adolescent Responsibility and Compassion (BARC) animal assisted therapy program began. While the facility has a long history of animal related classes and activities, this program allows dogs to live at the facility while undergoing training. In collaboration with the Humane Society of Kent County, the facility cares for dogs on site. Residents of detention are interviewed and accepted into the program where they serve as primary caregivers, working alongside Humane Society volunteers, trainers, and veterinarians. The Humane Society teaches the juveniles how to properly care for, train, and groom the rescued pets before the animals are adopted out. In addition to the love and self-esteem residents receive a certificate of completion. Since the program’s inception, over ten dogs have been adopted after training by Detention residents. 

Garden Project

Juvenile's Gardening

The residents layout and design the garden according to the plant’s size and sun requirements. The residents learn about the space requirements for planting e.g. (vertical gardening, square foot gardening). The size of the garden last year produced baskets full of food. The residents were able to continuously harvest from the small garden to see how a little garden could be so productive.

  • Planting seeds and plants can be therapeutic.

  • Being outside is a break from the structured routine

  • Residents earn coupons and follow the expectations of the CBT program while outside.

  • The maintenance of the garden and keeping a weekly progress report is done by the residents. 

  • The cost and savings of producing their own food is experienced, especially during the harvest.  

  • Approximately 50 or more different residents helped in the garden. Some of them came outside multiple times for the experience. 

  • Not one resident has ever refused to go outside and work in the garden.  

  • The small group numbers involved in gardening helps relationship building in the outdoors. Discussions about life, family, time in detention and court are common.