Between 4 and 8 September 2017, Terre des Hommes-Moldova organized a new training session on the implementation of the Intervention Program to reduce the criminal behavior of adolescents at risk. The course provided tools and intervention skills to probation counselors and prison staff who are responsible for dealing with juveniles who have committed criminal offenses, or who are indicted in certain criminal cases and are in detention during the trial case. The application of the program aims to change the behavior of these young people, reducing the risk of relapse and violent behavior, and encouraging them to adopt a pro-social behavioral lifestyle.
The program contains about 20 themes and has already been piloted successfully at the Orhei Probation Bureau, as well as in the Penitentiary no. 10 for juveniles from Goian. The program was institutionalized in the penitentiary system in April 2017. The training of a new group of employees allowed for the extension of the program implementation to other probation and penitentiary systems, as well as a behavioral change activities training for children who are in preventive detention.
The Romanian experts Mihaela Sasarman and Andrei Chişcu, who are program authors and trainers of the course, spoke to the participants about: factors that determine the offending behavior of children; the specific developmental milestones (neurobiological, cognitive, socio-emotional) of the target group (14-18 years old); risk and protection factors; the basic principles of effective prevention programs for children at risk of delinquency; the relationship between early life experiences (e.g. abuse and neglect) and the development of a specific attachment style; the role of caregivers in forming or changing a specific attachment pattern; cognitive-behavioral model of intervention; the antisocial logic; as well as how to identify and work with cognitive distortion. They also trained participants how to work in groups with children who have delinquent behavior and helped participants to practice lessons from the manual.
Present at the opening and closing sessions of the training were the Deputy Director of the central body of the National Probation Inspectorate, Sergiu Margarint, and head of the Education, Psychological and Social Assistance Division from the Department of Penitentiary Institutions, Ms. Iuliana Curea. They emphasized the high quality of the program and the importance of its implementation as one of many efforts that should be made to offer these young people the possibility of harmonious reintegration into society and dissuade them from criminality.
More details about the program and implementation manual are available online on Childhub and on the Terre des hommes-Moldova website.