UNITY & Dept of Justice Team to Advance Leadership in Indian Country

United National Indian Tribal YouthWASHINGTON — The United National Indian Tribal Youth, commonly known in Indian country as UNITY,  and the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs’ (OJP) Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) on Friday, December 6, 2013,  announced a new partnership.

UNITY will receive $850,000 from OJJDP to plan and implement the National Intertribal Youth Leadership Development Initiative.  The Initiative will offer training and learning opportunities for Native American youth to increase positive outcomes in their school, community and family environments.

“The National Intertribal Youth Leadership Development Initiative brings needed resources to Indian Country to support and enhance tribal efforts to prevent delinquency and improve the juvenile justice system for American Indian and Alaska Native youth,” said OJJDP Administrator Robert L. Listenbee. “The initiative will build on the successes of past OJJDP National Intertribal Youth Leadership Summits and further expand the leadership development support that OJJDP offers to tribal youth.”

UNITY is a national organization promoting personal development, citizenship, and leadership among American Indian and Alaska Native youth between the ages of 14 – 24.  Its network currently includes 132 affiliated youth councils in 35 states. Youth councils are sponsored by tribes, Alaska Native villages, high schools, colleges and other community organizations.

Participants in the Initiative will receive training through Intertribal Youth Leadership Development gatherings and other youth leadership development opportunities.  They will learn how to plan and carry out service projects within their respective communities and will gain valuable real world experiences to prepare them to succeed in their future leadership roles.

More information on the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is available at www.ojjdp.gov.  To learn more about UNITY, visit www.unityinc.org.

The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Assistant Attorney General Karol V. Mason, provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims.  OJP has six components: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART).  More information about OJP and its components can be found at http://www.ojp.gov.

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