Tubman integrates youth development into every aspect of its program. Rather than monitor, Tubman partners with young adults to pursue goals. We expect that youth want a meaningful future that includes higher education, a good home, and a professional career. We honor each youth’s right to name goals and define the work she or he commits to. We create a community where youth and staff collaborate to shape policies, assess needs, and create options to explore self and community. We recruit staff with the passions and expertise to lead workshops and coach powerfully, limiting case loads to 4 so that EVERY challenge a resident faces can be confronted with the support of a reliable adult. Finally, we connect personal development to community projects and real world experiences that allow the practice and prove the worth of an array of leadership and independent living skills. Key program elements include:

Each resident collaborates with a coach to identify needs and goals. These goals, and the steps to them, are articulated in a Transition Plan authored by each resident.

Intake assessments identify and put to use existing strengths, skills and resiliency.

Evaluation of program success is based on resident designated indicators in each resident’s transition plan. All evaluation is conducted in dialog and partnership with staff.

Residents participate in weekly house meetings to manage and address concerns within community.

Residents interview staff and resident applicants, making the final decision on who joins the Tubman community.

Residents develop leadership and lead service projects through weekly Youth Corps sessions.

Residents evaluate the program regularly to assess quality and suggest changes.

Residents partner with staff for annual Tubman policy review and proposed amendments.

House management is overseen by a rotating resident commissioner who carries authority.

Major violations of Tubman policy are addressed by the Peer Review Panel. Tubman residents attend a hearing, ask questions of all parties involved, and decide appropriate action.

Morning meetings offer a daily forum to share immediate needs and define the day’s schedule.

Residents participate in the Child Development Co-op and shape its activities.

Residents plan and lead recreation, including holiday events, birthdays, game nights, and trips.

WRAP: Wellness and Recovery Action Plans put control in the hands of each resident as they define the guidelines for responding to challenges and crisis in maintaining mental wellness.

These practices promote the development of each client’s positive identity by allowing self-determination, by identifying strengths and positive behaviors, and by giving space to practice and develop competencies through frequent social engagement and governance opportunities.