Our Town Our Kids is a pilot project funded through the Kansas Department of Corrections, Kansas Advisory Group, and the Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention. The two-year project focuses on collaboration with local communities, using a process called Study Circles. Study Circles is a procedure of developing and training local stakeholders in both process and content to investigate, analyze, and develop healthy youth initiatives.
The university group is K-State Juvenile Justice Collaborative (K-State JJC), a multidisciplinary team from Kansas State University, Fort Hays State University, and K-State Extension. The team covers a wide range of specialization including sociology, criminology, communication, trauma, adolescence, and research methods. K-State JJC received an award from Kansas Department of Corrections, Kansas Advisory Group, and the Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention to reduce system involvement and enhance community collaboration concerning juvenile justice.
Ultimately, Our Town Our Kids aims to empower local communities with a scalable, comprehensive set of tools which will stand as an exemplar to other counties across Kansas and beyond.
The 23 counties of the judicial districts involved in the pilot project are:
25th Judicial District: Finney, Greeley, Hamilton, Kearny, Scott, and Wichita
The combined 15th, 17th, and 23rd Judicial Districts: Cheyenne, Logan, Sheridan, Sherman, Rawlins, Thomas, Wallace, Decatur, Graham, Norton, Osborne, Phillips, Smith, Ellis, Gove, Rooks, and Trego