May, 24 2015
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Two Illinois Residential Treatment Programs to Close
A pair of adolescent residential treatment programs will close their doors at the end of the month.
The Family and Youth Services Bureau's Hanson House and Niequist Center will cease operation Nov. 30, citing a decrease in state funding as a primary reason.
"We're in the business to provide services," said Lisa Jordan, director of administrative services for the Family and Youth Services Bureau.
"Anytime we can't provide services to kids in need, we feel bad about that," she said.
The Family and Youth Services Bureau earlier this year closed the Learning Place, an alternative education program for students with behavior and academic problems, because of funding issues.
Why These Treatment Programs are Closing
The private, not-for-profit organization has cited an annual decrease in state funding of about $500,000.
Porter County, as it has
done since 2006, continues to fund the Family and Youth Services Bureau with $500,000 a year.
Both the Hanson House and the Niequist Center share a 15-bed facility at the Porter County Juvenile Services Bureau on Indiana 2 on Valparaiso's south side.
The Hanson House was dedicated in late 2003 and is an emergency shelter for young people who might not be fit for housing in the Porter County Juvenile Detention Center.
The Niequist Center is a long-term residential treatment program for youths unable to function in their homes, schools and communities.
"For the youth in the community, for our ability to care for those youths, it's a direct hit," Porter County Chief Juvenile Probation Officer Amy Beier said.
Juvenile Probation has placed adolescents in both programs over the years.
But Beier said because of funding matters, fewer have been placed in the Niequist Center the last couple years.
"Regardless of where you place them, it costs money," Beier said. "There has, historically, been a lack of funding for adolescent programs."
Beier said there are no other treatment programs in the county similar to those that will cease to exist when Hanson House and the Niequist Center close.
"It affects our ability to offer good, quality treatment options," Beier said.
Jordan said the Family and Youth Services Bureau will continue to offer a multitude of other services.
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