City approves funding for youth camp, aimed at preventing teen crime

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford City Council approved funding for a youth camp aimed at preventing crime among children and teens.

Alderman approved the $100,000 in funding for the Pathways to Hope project, a mentoring program that helps kids who’ve been exposed to trauma, like domestic violence and abuse in the home.

The funds will be used to hire a staff member to run it.

The city has already secured a $200,000 grant with the state to further fund the position, that’s awaiting federal approval.

Reports show 75% of juvenile offenders are also victims or witnesses to domestic or sexual abuse.

“If we don’t do something differently and redirect them, I’m afraid, our community is afraid, and our police department is afraid that we’re going to continue to be on the same spinning wheel of just arresting and rearresting with no end in sight,” said Jennifer Cacciapaglia, Mayor’s Office on Domestic Violence and Human Trafficking Prevention.

The funds will come out of the Rockford Police Department’s operations budget, which is still under budget in expenses.

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