Road DAWG Camp Kicks Off!


Today, students from around Fairfax County connected with their School Resource Officers (SROs) to begin their one week Road DAWG Camp!  The camps are divided into three groups of approximately 25 students each. After breakfast, the students had a chance to introduce themselves to each other and to Road DAWG staff. Some of the places they visited were the police helicopter port, the Adult Detention Center, and the Animal Shelter.


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The Road DAWG (Don’t Associate With Gangs) is a one-week summer camp for middle school youth who are nominated by their SROs. Three camps are organized and conducted by a coalition of providers, including the Police Department, the Department of Neighborhood and Community Services, CSB Wellness & Health Promotion, and Fairfax County Public Schools. The program’s goal is to educate young residents and reduce gang violence. Road DAWG was developed in 2004 as a weeklong camp at one site to address and prevent gang recruitment in neighborhoods identified through community meetings. The name “Road DAWG” came from an affectionate slang term for street officers. The camps have expanded to three sites. The program also has been enhanced to incorporate ongoing follow-up and activities with the campers and their families throughout the year. Road DAWG is based on strategies proven to be effective in strengthening youth resilience and helping to prevent problem behaviors.

The Road DAWG program:

Connects kids with after-school programs in their schools and communities.

Looks at individual and family needs and links to resources.

Continues contact with youth and families.

Includes follow-up activities throughout the year.

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