The Office of Youth Services (OYS) serves as a central point of information in Elizabeth for youth related issues. It promotes youth development, improves the conditions for children, and identifies resources within the community. OYS assists in establishing/expanding programs and services, as well as identifies resources to lead youth to be contributing members within their communities. Additionally, OYS encourages support strategies to allow youth to recognize their highest potential and promotes continuous collaboration with community groups and agencies.
The success of these programs has been measured in the achievement of academic excellence, increased volunteerism, participation in community-oriented events, choosing of healthy and positive alternatives, and an overall improved quality of life.
The Office of Youth Services operates programs which include, but are not limited to S.O.A.R., Safe Haven, Building Future Leaders, Curfew Program and the C.O.D.E. Youth Program. These initiatives are unique and innovative because they address quality of life issues impacting the youth of the City of Elizabeth holistically. The programs assist younger children within the City through mentoring and project interaction with members of the community. These programs focus upon honing skills, wellness and healthy living. The valuable services include the coordination of daily activities and the implementation of forums that address health, violence prevention, problem solving, self-esteem building, substance abuse, sexually transmitted diseases, adolescent/teenage pregnancy prevention and after school activities.
Additional City-Wide Youth initiatives include:
- Youth Job/Career Fair
- City Wide Spelling Bee
- Lights on Afterschool Program
- Family Health Fair
- City Wide Youth/ Senior Olympics
- Family Strengthening Programs
- Dare Day Jamboree
- Read-a-Thon Program
- The Office of Youth Summer Sleep Away Camp Program