Project Rebuild Foundation (PRBF) is a nonprofit collaborative effort that addresses the growing problem of chronic truancy in Lake County, IN.
Reducing truancy by rebuilding trust, rebuilding family and rebuilding community – one family at a time.
PRBF serves to administrate and implement Project Rebuild (PRB), a 90-day program designed to reduce truancy among Lake County students.
This program started as a pilot program in the city of Gary by then Pro-Tem Judge Inga Lewis-Shannon, PRB, a truancy court-based initiative, was created to address the growing juvenile crime occurring in the city during school hours. It became evident to Judge that a truancy issue was the contributing factor here, and she wanted to do something to expeditiously address this cause. PRBF, a collaborative of the Gary City Court, the Gary Police Department, the Lake County Prosecutor’s office, Indiana Parenting Institute (IPI), and Clark Road Genesis Family Center (CRGFC) resulted, their goal being to eradicate truancy by utilizing the legal system to direct both youth and their parents to the services needed to help them overcome their current life obstacles and enable them to excel.
Thanks to a professional and dedicated staff, volunteers, and Community Partners – who provide such services as: parenting education, drop-out prevention education, mental health/counseling, tutoring/academic assistance, mentoring, college and career readiness, extracurricular activities, community service opportunities, employment assistance (includes job readiness skills services), financial literacy, as well as other family support services, as needed – PRB is able to effectively serve this at-risk, and oft in-need, demographic, achieving encouraging outcomes.
In fact, those who have gone through PRB emerge with improved attendance, better parent-child relationships and better family-school relationships, if not an improved outlook on their lives and their futures. And with a reduction in recidivism as part of PRB’s desired outcomes, since program launch, the recidivism rate has remained at only 1%.
Some of PRB’s key partnerships include: the Gary Community School Corporation, Gary Youth Services Bureau, the City of Gary, Lake County Juvenile Probation, and the Lake County Superior Court – Juvenile Division (which recently concurred to adopt PRB as the county-wide model for addressing truancy in Lake County).
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