Winnebago County was awarded $250,000 to create a Youth Recovery Court for the first time in Illinois.
The three-year grant was given to the 17th Judicial Circuit Court by the Bureau of Justice Assistance to create the specialty court for those ages 10-17. It serves youth in juvenile delinquency court who have committed nonviolent offenses and have a serious mental illness, a history of trauma or mental disorders coupled with substance abuse problems.
Winnebago County Juvenile Probation and Rosecrance will collaborate to coordinate the program.
“This funding will help Winnebago County achieve outcomes for nonviolent, mentally ill juvenile offenders that reduce recidivism, promote recovery and help keep families together,” U.S. Senator Dick Durbin said in a statement.
The court is expected to start April 1, 2012 after a six-month planning phase to finalize the details of the program.