Youth in Custody

Juvenile Justice Center (JJC)

SFPL operates a library at Juvenile Justice Center (JJC), providing comprehensive library services to youth in custody as well as the JJC staff. Youth visit the library weekly thanks to the support of the San Francisco Unified School District’s Woodside Learning Center and the Juvenile Probation Department. Youth receive extensive reader’s advisory and reference services, and the librarian schedules author visits, City College of San Francisco information sessions, and other programs relevant to youth in custody. Youth at JJC frequently report that they read more books while in custody than in their everyday life, and many report that they finished their first book ever while at JJC. Their enthusiasm for reading often leads to a significant improvement in their reading level and to an interest in self-directed learning that continues after their release.

"The library at JJC is a very important place for juveniles locked up here. The librarian is very respectful and helpful. When you walk into the library here at JJC you can find a book that you want, as well as a book you can relate to. Many of the books are about the struggles of teen years. If you cannot find the book you want the librarian will do the best she can to get the book you want into the library. Having a library at a juvenile center is crucial in passing the time for many juveniles and many learn from reading the books here. The JJC library is an excellent place to discover things about yourself and your reading preferences. The JJC library is the best library I have ever been to." --Dillon, age 16

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Log Cabin Ranch

The library at Log Cabin Ranch (LCR) serves incarcerated teenagers from San Francisco, who have been ordered by the juvenile court to spend approximately one year completing a program that includes school, job skills training, counseling, and therapy. LCR residents visit the library twice a week and can borrow and request books and magazines. The library is equipped with a TV and DVD player, a Wii gaming system, two iPads, and a laptop, which residents use to make music, watch movies, and play games like MarioKart and Madden. Crafts are popular at the LCR library, and residents are able to knit and wear their own colorful beanies, as well as make jewelry, artwork, and duct tape creations.

The JJC and Log Cabin Ranch programs circulate a stand-alone collection that is not connected to the larger SFPL collection. Residents at both facilities are encouraged to sign up for library cards so they can continue being library users after their release.

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