Youth Excellence Program (YEP)

The Youth Excellence Program (YEP) is a six to seven week substance abuse prevention and social development program serving at-risk youth ages 10 - 18 in the Miami, Florida (33127, 33150, 33142,33136, 33161, 33169, 33054, and 33169).

YEP is a comprehensive evidence-based program designed to prevent and deter use of controlled substances and under-age drinking, as well as promote positive and healthy decision-making skills. It is supported by the Department of Children and Families (DCF) and Thriving Mind South Florida.

Participants are referred to the program by their local elementary, middle, or high school, using a selective prevention strategy to identify those who are at "high-risk" for substance abuse. Risk factors contributing to this category include poor school attendance, low academic performance, low income, recent immigration, children of inmates, at-risk of abuse/neglect, and other conditions impacting youth development. For students needing additional support, YEP provides one-on-one linkage services to connect them to the appropriate resources, such as after-school programming, academic enrichment, and care coordination. As part of its model, YEP also engages and encourages parents to provide holistic support for the entire family.