Working Together For Our Children's Future

Vision
We envision a community where county leaders, businesses and residents are united to provide all children of St. Lucie County the resources they need to thrive, be successful and achieve their full potential. 
 
Mission
To sustain a team of county and business leaders who mobilize resources to improve the education, health, safety, nutrition and care of all children in St. Lucie County.
 
Background
The Roundtable of St. Lucie County, a 501(c)(3) organization, is a group of St. Lucie County leaders who work together to accomplish system change that results in improved outcomes for youth throughout St. Lucie County. The Roundtable does not focus on “quick fixes.”  Instead, it identifies and implements research-based, comprehensive solutions to achieve and sustain long-term success for St. Lucie County youth.   
 
The board was created in 1995 by five Chief Executive Officers from the Fort Pierce Police Department, Department of Juvenile Justice, Department of Children & Families, the Children’s Services Council, and the City of Port St. Lucie. Their goal was to develop a comprehensive plan to better the lives of children in St. Lucie County. Since 1995, the board has grown to include chief or executive level officers from more than 30 community organizations. 
 
In 1999, the Roundtable of St. Lucie County was one of six sites in the State of Florida  to secure a grant from the national Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).  Under the grant, the Roundtable conducted a county wide assessment of data relating to St. Lucie County’s children, and developed a comprehensive plan called St. Lucie Hand in Hand to reduce risk factors and problem behaviors facing St. Lucie County youth.  The comprehensive St. Lucie Hand in Hand plan is centered on a “risk-focused” prevention model, supported by 30 years of adolescent problem behavior research by Dr. David Hawkins and Dr. Richard Catalano. For the past fifteen years, St. Lucie Hand in Hand has served as the foundation for all of the Roundtable’s activities and, working together, Roundtable partners have achieved significant success: 
 
  • Teen pregnancies decreased 11.6%;
  • Delinquency decreased 41%;
  • Underage drinking in middle and high school decreased 24%;
  • School expulsions decreased 88%;
  • Out of school suspensions decreased 53%;
  • Unexcused absences decreased 11% in elementary, 22% in middle school and 4% in high school; and
  • Misdemeanor assault and battery decreased 18%.
Today’s Roundtable consists of six (6) Networks that concentrate on the following key areas: Academic Success (Kids at Hope), Child & Adolescent Health (5-2-1-0 and SafeKids), Child Welfare, Economic Sufficiency (Bridges To Prosperity), Safe Neighborhoods (IGNITE Youth Alliance and Lincoln Park Advisory Committee), and Substance Abuse Prevention (Drug Free St. Lucie). The singular focus of each network allows it to develop a strategic plan of action around its specific risk factors through education, system and policy change, and comprehensive environmental strategies.
 
The Substance Abuse Prevention Network (Drug Free St. Lucie) focuses on preventing underage drinking and substance abuse through education, awareness, community-wide initiatives and changing social norms. This Network promotes two promising campaigns: “Friday Night Done Right” and “Know the Law: A Guide for Youth and Parents."
 
 
The Youth Leadership St. Lucie is a chance for area teens to have a voice in St. Lucie County. The program, held at IRSC, is designed to give students an opportunity to earn college credits while learning about various aspects of our community. It includes career options, leadership roles, governmental and law enforcement operations, environmental issues, and how to be heard by elected officials when dealing with important issues.
 
 
The Safe Neighborhoods Network seeks to help children make good choices in life, such as staying in school, not committing crimes, and delaying sexual activity. Our goal is to support the development of well-adjusted children who, in turn, become well-adjusted adults.  
 
In 2014 the network took the lead in implementing Ignite Youth Alliance (formerly known as the Restoring the Village Youth Initiative), an anti-violence strategy for reaching St. Lucie County youth who are involved in, or at risk of becoming involved in, street violence. Safe Neighborhoods and its community mobilization subcommittee, the Lincoln Park Advisory Committee (LPAC), are continuing the community wide assessment of gangs and street violence in Fort Pierce.
 
 
The Child & Adolescent Network objectives include children and adolescents maintain a healthy weight and families learn safety rules to prevent injury.  The Network believes that every St. Lucie County child deserves a healthy start, access to health care, the knowledge and skills to stay healthy, and a healthy life plan that reduces risky behavior.  The Injury Prevention Sub-Committee has applied to SafeKids International to establish a Coalition in the county. To reduce childhood obesity, the 5-2-1-0 Sub-Committee is developing ways to promote healthier eating habits for our pre-school and school age children.
 
 
The purpose of the Child Welfare Network is to ensure the safety of, and improve outcomes for, at risk youth in our community. The Network has four (4) objectives. They are: to decrease the percentage of dependent children living in group homes versus children placed in foster homes; to increase the percentage of male and minority volunteer Guardians ad Litem; to decrease the occurrence of lockouts (defined as a situation where a parent is refusing to have a child return home or make alternate arrangements for them usually following a delinquency act or mental health event); and to increase the readiness of youth leaving the foster care system to live on their own through enhanced development of life skills and increased access to resources for these youth.  The Network is comprised of three subcommittees: Youth Readiness, Keeping Families Connected and Recruitment. The Network meets on the first Tuesday of each quarter at 10:00am.
 
 
 
The Economic Sufficiency Network (ESN) is focusing on "disconnected youth".  This network, also called Bridges to Prosperity, St. Lucie, is working with cross sector partners to develop a comprehensive strategy for preventing, intervening and reconnecting youth who are vulnerable to or have become disconnected.  Disconnection, defined as youth ages 16-24 who are not in school or employed, has a high cost for individuals, families and communities.  But there is good news.  Studies show that we can retool supports so that prevention, intervention and reconnection successfully reduce the young adults that make up this population.  We need your help to accomplish this goal.  Please read more on this site and consider contacting network chair, Wydee'a Wilson at Wydeea.Wilson@djj.state.fl.us to become part of this important work. 
 
 
Experiencing success in school lifts self-esteem, inspires academic commitment, and instills a positive view of school. This “experience of success” is the mission of the Roundtable’s Academic Success Network. We work with the community to promote higher graduation rates, increase proficiency in reading and math and keep our children in school until they graduate.