Academy Street Firehouse Program


Academy Street Firehouse Program

Our WorkAcademy Street Firehouse Program

The Academy Street Firehouse Program addresses the specific health and psychosocial needs of children living with, affected, or orphaned by HIV/AIDS. The Firehouse, located centrally in downtown Newark, strives to meet the mental/social/behavioral health needs of school-aged children. This facility is also home to a thriving summer teen employment program and services for HIV-impacted young adults.

The Firehouse Program aims to provide direct interventions for children who have experienced trauma in the Newark community. The needs of these children are compounded by their individual experiences of trauma, but as a group we frequently help children deal with: sexual trauma; substance abuse prevention; gang awareness; restorative justice; and the impact of living in domestic violence. The Firehouse Program is an important intervention for these youth, as positive engagement of after-school time can lead to youth staying out of the juvenile justice system.

Current resiliency-building activities at the Firehouse include:

  • Yoga and meditation
  • Movement therapy
  • Art therapy
  • “Breathing corner”—allows children to take meditative breaks from group
  • One-on-one sessions with a Trauma-Informed Care Specialist and a Psychosocial Development Specialist