Justice Services - Youth

Goodwill Juvenile Justice Programs

Back to a Future

Goodwill’s Back to a Future (BTAF) Program is funded through the Palm Beach County Public Safety Department. The program was created for youth returning home to Palm Beach County from a residential commitment program. The goal of the BTAF Program is to reduce recidivism by providing participants with services that will help make them successful. The program begins at the time of commitment, continues through the transition period (60 days before release) and follows the participant back into the community. Youth are eligible if they are moderate to high risk to recidivate and are returning to Palm Beach County.

The need for programs and services is determined for each participant individually, based on an assessment. A case plan is developed while the youth is still in commitment; referrals to services are done before release or upon release into the community. All participants are provided with comprehensive case management to assist them in accessing services and supports, ranging from transitional housing to community service hours or mental health/mentoring services and pro-social activities.

Gulfstream Goodwill Industries' services to BTAF participants include case management, life skills training, Goodwill Works (job readiness), educational assistance and employment services.

Gulfstream Goodwill is pleased to work collaboratively with community partners to deliver comprehensive services to youth in the BTAF Program.

Alternatives to Secure Detention

The Alternatives to Secure Detention (ATSD) Program allows participants, ages eight to 18, who would otherwise be court ordered to remain secure in the juvenile detention center to be redirected to their own community with support and supervision.

Youth who are determined to remain secure are released by the judge to the ATSD Program. Gulfstream Goodwill’s case mangers monitor and mentor the youth, visiting them and their families at their homes and schools. Case managers meet with participants a minimum of three times per week with additional visits as needed.

Alternatives to Secure Detention youth participate in monthly activities designed to enhance social skills, life skills, and improve self-esteem and motivation. Some of these activities include guest speakers, educational modules, and movie and game nights. During holidays and other school closures, participants enjoy outings, such as fishing, bowling and skating.

Families and ATSD participants are offered a variety of services, such as academic remediation, support services and academics.

Going the Distance

Going the Distance is a youth mentoring program funded by Palm Beach County Youth Services. Gulfsream Goodwill Industries provides targeted mentoring to youth, ages 13 to 22, who have touched the juvenile justice system. Our goal is empower at-risk youth to make positive life choices that enable them to maximize their personal, current and future potential by ensuring each participant experiences a nurturing and positive relationship, as well as community support.


GoodLeaders is a youth violence prevention program funded through the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. Gulfstream Goodwill Industries has partnered with Palm Beach Lakes Community High School to bring the GoodLeaders Program onsite at the school.

Students who participate in the GoodLeaders program learn life and employment skills through a series of modules covering a variety of topics, such as motivation, conflict resolution, time management, organizational skills, interviewing skills and mock interviews. Program participants receive individual and group mentoring; learn how to navigate public transportation through supervised transportation trips; and plan and participate in a Service Learning Project.

Upon completion of the program, youth participate in a graduation ceremony in which they receive a Certificate of Completion and an incentive. This important program empowers its young participants, building independence and self-esteem, and equipping them with the skills needed in life to pursue post-secondary education, and seek and retain employment.

For more information about our youth justice services, please contact Director of Justice Services Laura Waterman (561) 848-7200, ext. 2284, or lwaterman@gulfstreamgoodwill.org.