Recreation and leisure activities are an important part of adolescent success. Positive use of free time can reduce the risk of youth becoming or staying involved with the juvenile justice system. A sense of belonging and positive connections with adults and peers with similar interests helps build the resiliency and confidence needed for success.
It is our goal to offer opportunities that build on the strengths and interests of all youth and teach important life skills through participation. Our programs take place on campus and in the community and include sports, personal fitness and wellness, music, art, games, team building, making community connections and community service projects. With the guidance from supportive staff, volunteers and community members, youth become involved in enrichment activities that foster healthy relationships and build pro-social skills. The recreation programs help youth acquire a growth mindset and assist in developing a sense of self-efficacy, which are also important for success. We strive to have a lasting positive impact by creating hope within each youth and support them in seeing their worth and potential.
The facility underwent an initial American Correctional Association ( ACA ) audit in November 2005 scoring 99% and received Accreditation Status in May 2006. The facility has gone through three audits since then and has scored 100% each time. Our current accreditation goes until 2018. The facility also received the prestigious "Barbara Allen-Hagen award" in 2009. This award recognized the outstanding achievement in Performance Based Standards (PbS) efforts for a detention facility. LCYDC was also a finalist this same year for this same award for a commitment facility. Long Creek Youth Development Center continues to be a nationally renowned correctional facility in the country.
The Maine Department of Corrections is committed to principles of restorative justice in all areas of juvenile justice. A full-time Restorative Justice Coordinator assists residents and staff implement restorative practices at Long Creek Youth Development Center. The Restorative Justice Coordinator also facilitates restorative practices that between residents and those harmed by their actions for which the resident has been adjudicated often resulting in “repair agreements” that hold youth accountable for their delinquent conduct in a developmentally appropriate and restorative manner.
Restorative practices are also frequently utilized throughout the facility as a means of contributing to actively building a more peaceful and collaborative environment that effectively addresses misbehavior and crime in ways that consider the people affected, the harm done, and repairing relationships.