“Brown bag” lecture to focus on teens, juvenile c

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    By AMY LONG

    October is Crime Prevention month and the Provo Police Department is promoting several crime-awareness events.

    Friday, Sheree Svensson will present a Brown Bag lecture on the topic of youth risk factors, according to a news release.

    As a BYU student, Svensson was a member of both the Single Parents Association and the Student Council.

    She worked in the Provo County Detention Center during 1991, then continued her service as a tracker for the state of Utah.

    Most recently, she worked with the youth of Millard county for the latter half of the 1996-97 school year as a Drug Prevention Specialist.

    Svensson currently independently assesses children at risk of becoming juvenile delinquents for the police department, said Karen Mayne, press contact for the Provo Police Department.

    Friday’s lecture will focus on results of research conducted with 500,000 youth by the Search Institute, Svensson said.

    Specifically, the research discovered that assets, or elements of teens’ self-image, are an important part of eliminating juvenile crime.

    For example, when the number of assets a young adult possesses is minutely raised, the probability of that teen becoming a delinquent is decreased significantly, Svensson said.

    The 40 assets are comprised of 20 external assets and 20 internal assets, Svensson said. External assets are made up of environmental factors. Internal assets consist of intangible qualities, such as a sense of belonging.

    Community sevice, exposure to the fine arts, homework and parental contact can provide a sense of belonging, Svensson said. These are the programs that are now being cut from many schools.

    The research is for everyone, Svensson said. Parents, business people, teachers, students and community members must deal with youth in some aspect of their lives. All members of the community will benifit from a new understanding of youth.

    The lecture will be held in the City Council Chambers of the Provo City Building at 350 W. Center from noon to 1 p.m.

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