The Juvenile Placement Unit’s primary focus is to provide youth in care a safe and healthy environment. Our goal is to empower youth in care and achieve permanency. The officers assigned to the placement unit work closely with youth who have been placed on formal probation pursuant to Section 602 WIC, removed from their family home and ordered into foster care by the Ventura County Juvenile Court.
As youth in care are among the most vulnerable population, our officers provide intensive case management with a team approach. Officers oversee the delivery of reunification and aftercare services to safely return youth to their homes or assist them in their transition to independent living.
Extensive efforts to place youth with extended family or in a home-based setting is always a priority. The placement unit is committed to recruit Resource Families, formerly referred to as foster homes, to provide youth with the option to reside in a home-based setting
The utilization of Child and Family Team Meetings (CFTMs) help develop a support plan for the youth in care. CFTMs provide teaming with other county partners that allows for better engagement with families and shared commitment from the circle of support. CFTMs can change the trajectory of an unfavorable situation and prepare youth and families for a better outcome. It is based on the belief that children, youth, and families have the capacity to resolve their problems if given sufficient support and resources to help them do so.
When necessary, a youth can be placed at a Short-Term Residential Therapeutic Program (STRTP) within the state of California. The placement unit ensures that the facility meets the youth’s individual needs and provides the youth with the required services. Once the youth in care completes the program, the goal is for them to return to their family home.
If youth do not reunify with family or complete probation successfully prior to age 18, they are referred to an independent living skills program and can qualify for AB 12 Extended Foster Care (EFC) services. Adult youth in care, also referred to as Non-Minor Dependents (NMDs), can qualify for extended foster care services until the age of 21. NMDs can qualify for financial assistance to assist with housing in an apartment setting, a college dormitory, or renting a room. They also receive services and ongoing support until they age out of the system. Officers assist NMDs with managing the unique challenges of this population by providing case management and supervision as they transition to adulthood.