The mission of COMPASS Youth Collaborative is to connect to high-risk youth wherever they are, engaging young people in relationships to provide support and opportunities that help them become ready, willing, and able to succeed in education, employment, and life.
The organization's target population is young people ages 13 to 21 who have a history of being affiliated with a gang, carrying a weapon, perpetrating violence, or having involvement with the juvenile justice system. The organization's youth development advisors, who have overcome challenges in their lives similar to those that the organization's target population face, recruit young people to join the program by meeting them where they are out on the streets of Hartford.
Once recruited, each young person enrolled in the program is assigned a youth development advisor, called a Peacebuilder, who provides case management, mentorship, and builds a strong, caring relationship with them. Through the program, young people participate in skill-building groups to support the development of positive habits and pro-social relationships, and are connected to other resources and services they may need. Peacebuilders also provide crisis response to help mediate conflicts involving youth in Hartford's schools, hospitals, and neighborhoods.