"Boot Camp" for Kids / by Stephen Cooper

Every month or so, I get a phone call from a frantic parent hoping that my boot camp is one that helps kids with behavioral problems.  I don't have camps for kids.

But I've been referring them to the L.A. County Sheriff's VIDA program. 

I just received this notice...

Altadena station is now enrolling in the VIDA, (Vital Intervention and Directional Alternatives) program for kids aged 11 to 17 1/2. For more information visit, vida.la or call (661) 753-6293, and speak with Deputy Walters.

Conceived and operated by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, in partnership with community-based organizations, volunteers, schools and families, VIDA serves kids between the ages of 11 and 17 1/2 at eight locations across the county. Over the course of the 16-week program, VIDA participants focus on increasing academic achievement, improving family relationships, developing positive social behaviors and realizing the possibilities for a better future. 

The program includes regular visits with VIDA staff members, a Saturday component and weekly sessions with the child and parent to facilitate communication and understanding. Upon completion of the program, participants receive a certificate of completion and are referred to other programs to continue their growth.