Catholic Social Services’ Saint Gabriel System (SGS) held two graduations last month to celebrate the accomplishments of 66 adjudicated youths.

Saint Gabriel’s Hall, a residential program for court adjudicated youth with a dedicated on-campus high school, graduated 37 young men last month, while Saint Gabriel’s System day treatment program at De LaSalle Vocational graduated 29. Several students also received awards for academic achievement, leadership, character, attendance and community service.

The Saint Gabriel System is committed to helping youth entrusted to its care by Philadelphia Family Court overcome adversities and achieve a positive future. Often, students come to “Saint Gabe’s” and “DelVoc” as they are affectionately called by faculty and staff, with serious gaps in their education, as well as challenges related to relational skills, and family/community support systems.

One student from DelVoc said, “Before I came to DelVoc, I had attended multiple high schools. The most recent, I stayed only for a short period of time. When I did arrive at DelVoc, I was skeptical about how the school worked and what I would learn and I was also feeling out of place because I had not been to school in a long time.” He went on to say, “The vibe at DelVoc was different and I didn’t want to do anything wrong that would result in placement.”

While working to achieve current grade level proficiencies, students enroll in career and technical training to earn industry recognized certification in building maintenance, auto repair, culinary arts, Microsoft Office, and landscaping/horticulture. The academic curriculum at SGS is fully aligned with that of the School District of Philadelphia to ensure a seamless return to public schools for those who matriculate outside of SGS.

Rearrests of students from these programs during the community reintegration period are below 10 percent and the number of youth absent without notice is in the single digit percentile. Both of these benchmarks position Saint Gabriel’s System of Catholic Social Services as a leader among service providers seeking to improve the lives of young people facing these daunting challenges.

Established in 1899 by the De LaSalle Christian Brothers as the Philadelphia Protectorate for Boys, Saint Gabriel’s Hall is a residential program located in Audubon, Montgomery County, serving young men ages 10 to 18 adjudicated by the Philadelphia Court System. Today, dedicated lay people inspired by the LaSallian mission continue to provide a structured setting where 200 youth receive transformative therapeutic and educational support. Residential treatment employs a team approach to rehabilitation with educators, child care workers, social workers, psychologists and counselors working together to provide an individualized treatment plan for each client in care.

De LaSalle Vocational is a day treatment center of the SGS located in Bensalem, Bucks County, where educational, vocational and behavioral support services are offered to court-adjudicated youth. The program educates 100 young men each year in academics as well as Carpentry, Automotive Mechanics, and Culinary Arts, and boasts excellent job placement rates due to comprehensive career development assistance. To learn more, please visit www.st-gabes.org.