On August 6, the Gainesville Sun covered an important program run by CDS Family and Behavioral Health Services. The Stop Now and Plan (SNAP) program was brought to Florida two years ago and has served 54 boys in the Gainesville area, as of the time of the report being published. The program is run in Gainesville, Tallahassee, Jacksonville and Orlando. For information on the program in each location, click here.

SNAP targets boys ages 6 to 11 who display aggressive and antisocial behavior and are prone to emotional outbursts, lying, stealing and bullying. The program seeks to teach the boys how to react to situations under pressure and to “help keep kids in school and to help the families make their problems smaller, not bigger,” said Evelitza Soto, SNAP supervisor.

This year, the SNAP for Girls program will be launched for girls ages 6 to 11. It will focus on building communication and relationship skills. It will also include a group called “Girls Growing Up Healthy,” which helps girls and their parents or caregivers after completion of the regular SNAP program.

“SNAP is necessary and needed because it addresses the issues our younger children are dealing with,” said Gregory Pelham, chair of the Alachua County Juvenile Justice Council and a case manager with the Teen Court program run by the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office. “We have a lot of programs for our middle and high school kids, but not many for our elementary kids who need help with behavior issues.”

For more details on specific components that make up both programs, please click here to read the Gainesville Sun’s story.

If SNAP might be a good fit for your family, please visit this webpage and contact Corey Collins at (352) 318-9416 or Carlos Aguirre at (352) 318-9431.