Arizona has a female incarceration rate nearly twice as high as the national average, and while recent reforms have reduced the number of men in state prison over the last few decades, the number of incarcerated women in Arizona has yet to see a similar decrease8.
Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona’s programs are designed to acknowledge the long and complex processes that lead to female incarceration and serve youth in a variety of situations such as those juvenile detention, those who are at risk of detention sentencing without intervention, those who have been recently released from detention, and those who have experienced the incarceration of a caregiver.
Adelante Jovencitas, or AJ, focuses on the unique needs of youth impacted by or at risk for involvement with the juvenile justice system.
AJ places a special emphasis on empowering youth to engage in positive pursuits and explore critical life skills, including career exploration, healthy relationships, and self-care techniques. Youth learn from a diverse set of program facilitators, who bring unique perspectives and experiences.
The positive and stigma-free environment gives youth the opportunity to explore new interests and skills without fear of judgment, focusing on their strengths and looking forward to their futures.