Blog | October 16, 2019

The Prime Time for Juvenile Crime in Hawaii

High-quality programs can help prevent crime during afterschool hours and throughout the day

The more than 5,000 law enforcement leaders around the nation who are members of Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, have long known that the hours immediately after school lets out, when parents are likely not available to supervise, are the prime-time for juvenile crime. Over the past 20 years, law enforcement leaders across the country have relied on high-quality afterschool programs to provide supportive, stable, and enriching environments with caring adults that keep children and youth out of trouble and safe, while supporting their academic success, and social and emotional development.

The Prime Time for Juvenile Crime in Hawaii

The Prime Time for Juvenile Crime in Hawaii

While all states saw a high rate of crime occurring during the afterschool hours, some states also saw high rates of crime at other times during the day, such as Hawaii. In Hawaii, juvenile crime peaks from 6 to 10 a.m. with 35 percent of school-day incidences recorded at that time. The high rate of juvenile crime being recorded earlier in the day may be partly attributed to the fact that truancy is a crime in Hawaii.

Program Highlight: Adult Friends for Youth, Honolulu

Adult Friends for Youth (AFY) first began as the “Hawaii Youth Services Volunteer Project,” a mentorship afterschool program aimed at high-risk youth, specifically youth who had behavioral issues in school or involved in the juvenile justice system, through a two-year federal grant to the University of Hawaii. The organization, recognizing the need for a longer-term and holistic intervention to adequately support high-risk youth, reestablished itself as Adult Friends for Youth, with the mission of stopping community violence, strengthening community safety, and supporting local kids and families to help all youth reach their full potential.

Prior to AFY I was getting into fights. Since [participating], I have been going to school every day. Adult Friends for Youth saved my life.

AFY Alumnus

AFY’s approach to working with youth includes six program areas: education, providing supports such as tutoring, design thinking workshops, and college preparation and exploration; social activities, with the goal of introducing students to new experiences, like having a meal at a nice restaurant; employment and careers, where students have the opportunity to explore different job pathways; culture and religion, using food, music, and art to examine students’ cultures, appreciate differences, and identify commonalities; recreation and sports; and community service, with activities including neighborhood clean ups and Christmas caroling. Sharing the impact that the program has had on his life, an alumnus of the program said, “Prior to AFY I was getting into fights, and not going to school. Since meeting AFY, I have been doing my work and going to school every day. Now I am [a] sophomore at Farrington High School, getting a 3.0 GPA and participating in extracurricular activities such as rugby, AFY’s Social Entrepreneurship Program, and Olelo. AFY saved my life.” Current and former principals of high schools served by AFY believe in the value of the program, with one principal stating that with AFY’s intervention, “…campus and community violence has lessened” and another that, “AFY services are invaluable and definitely needed.”


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