*** Due to COVID-19 County Regulations,
some of the programming and guidelines at YDF may have changed***
Youth Detention Facility Services
9601 Kiefer Boulevard • Sacramento, CA 95827 • Phone: (916) 875-6996 • Directions
Sacramento County Probation is responsible for the operation and management of the County’s juvenile hall, called the Youth Detention Facility (YDF). YDF is the first point of interaction for most youth who enter the County's juvenile justice system.
YDF provides a safe and secure environment for our youth by focusing on educational, recreational, and vocational programming as well as medical and mental health services. We strive to promote the health and well-being of the youth we serve by encouraging law-abiding behavior, teaching individual accountability for one's choices, and supporting positive change.
Please see the Board of State & Community Corrections Biennial Inspection.
(YDF Biennial Inspection)
In September 2020, Senate Bill 823 (SB 823) was signed into law, initiating the closure of the California Department of Rehabilitation Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), and shifting responsibilities and resources to counties to supervise and deliver services to local youth at the furthest end of the juvenile justice continuum.
In response to SB 823, the Sacramento County Probation Department established the Valley Oak Youth Academy (VOYA) program within YDF. The VOYA program provides a safe and secure environment for realigned youth serving commitments at YDF.
With collaboration between dedicated and culturally responsive probation staff, contract employees, and over 100 volunteers from community based organizations, VOYA provides youth with a vast array of programs. Our evidence based programs focus on strengthening pro-social skills, confidence building, problem solving, decision making abilities, and increasing physical and academic performance. These programs provide opportunities for positive outcomes that work toward rehabilitation and reintegration upon release from custody. With these services in mind, the goals of the VOYA program are to increase public safety by reduced transfer of youth to the adult criminal justice system, reduced racial and ethnic disparities, and reduced confinement in the juvenile justice system.
During initial orientiation, a tree-focused activity identifies all the supports youth have when they enter the program. This visual tree continues to “branch" out with additional supports (e.g. family, advocates, providers, teachers, etc.) as they progress through the program. When youth leave the program, the visual reminds them they are not alone, they have support from many areas of their life, and they are growing into strong individuals capable of making healthy, positive decisions that benefit themselves and the community.
We can better address the needs of youth locally who would have otherwise been committed and delivered to state facilities throughout California. Sacramento County youth will now remain in closer proximity to our community, family, friends, providers, clinicians, teachers, faith leaders, and probation officers who understand individualized needs, treatment, and how best to support adolescent behavior. We believe this will result in a positive/successful outcome.
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El Centro Junior/Senior High, operated by the Sacramento County Office of Education in YDF, is a Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) accredited, year-round, school program. We offer a traditional diploma pathway, High School Equivalency Test (HiSET), Advanced Education courses through Los Rios Community College District, hybrid and correspondence college courses for graduates, 21st Century Skills preparation, and pre-apprenticeship programs in Culinary Arts and Construction Technology.
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Recreational Activities and Physical Education
Daily recreational activities and physical education are provided to all YDF residents within the facility. There is a gymnasium and swimming pool, and courtyards in all units that are utilized for organized sports and physical activities.
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Juvenile Correctional Health is responsible for providing legally mandated health care services to the youth in YDF. Under the umbrella of the Department of Health Services, Primary Health Division, Juvenile Correctional Health employs an interdisciplinary team of healthcare providers, registered nurses, and administrative staff responsible for providing relevant and continually evolving healthcare practices that will ensure high quality services and efficient service delivery.
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Juvenile Justice Institutions Mental Health is responsible for providing legally mandated, culturally competent, adaptive, responsive and meaningful behavioral health care services to the youth in YDF. Behavioral health services are provided by licensed clinical staff of the Department of Health Services, Division of Behavioral Health, and supervised by a licensed Mental Health Program Coordinator. The program contracts with physicians to provide on-site psychiatric services.
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Many programs and activities have been developed by staff and managers at YDF to provide rehabilitative opportunities for the youth, including peer mentoring, fitness and sports activities, trauma-informed therapy, leadership development, and more. Hundreds of volunteers provide everything from faith-based counseling to yoga classes.
YDF also offers the Leadership Education and Athletic Program (LEAP) and the Skills Training Enrichment Program (STEP). LEAP emphasizes teamwork and challenges residents both physically and mentally. STEP is a multidisciplinary youth program encompassing education, mental health, recreational therapy, and physical fitness to build the residents’ skills and improve their behavior. Program components include individual and group therapeutic activities and encourages pro-social behavior.
View our booklet for an overview of additional programs and services provided
Parent Orientation Night
Parent Orientation Night is held every third Thursday from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm in YDF's Visitor Center. The events provide opportunities for parents and guardians to learn about the services and programming their child will receive while in Probation's care. Parents will also have an opportunity to obtain resources for their child’s successful reintegration back into the community. For more information about Parent Orientation Night, please contact Supervising Probation Officer Maria Rivera at 916-874-1544 or email: RiveraMa@saccounty.net.
Juvenile Justice Chaplaincy
Religious services and spiritual support are available to residents and staff through the Juvenile Justice Chaplaincy Volunteer Program. For more information, please contact the Chaplaincy's Administrative Assistant at 916-875-1305 or inquire via email to Chaplain Tara Benning at: BenningT@saccounty.net.
Sacramento County Youth Detention Facility in the News
Sacramento Youth Facility Moves Toward A Culture Of Healing Intead Of Punishment
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