Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

Spurwink Services: Diversion to Assets

Diversion to Assets (D2A) is a court diversion program for young people ages 9-17 who are involved for the first time with the juvenile justice system. D2A protects young people from further involvement in the juvenile justice system by connecting them with appropriate local opportunities—such as substance abuse education, community service, counseling, mentoring, restorative justice, youth engagement, and leadership development. These connections help young people develop the internal and external assets needed for healthy development, and for becoming more positive members of the community.

D2A is the product of a collaborative effort among the Maine Department of Corrections, the Maine Office of Substance Abuse, and the Communities for Children and Youth Network, housed at Spurwink Services. Police, juvenile community corrections officers, and district attorneys can refer youth they feel will benefit from involvement in the program.

With funding from SAMHSA’s Service to Science Subcontract to Build Evaluation Capacity of Evidence-based Interventions, D2A will do the following:

  • standardize program implementation, by adding rigorous program fidelity measures and an instrument to track implementation
  • engage family members in program activities by developing a packet of resources for parents and adults whose children are involved in the program
  • enhance data collection and analysis of existing data to provide information on the characteristics of youth who benefit most from the D2A program, most effective activities, effective dosage, and behavioural and attitudinal changes that result from program participation
  • introduce a comparison group to help rule out alternative explanations for participant outcomes
  • develop an operations manual that will serve as a guide for the existing program sites and as a dissemination and replication tool



Susan Savell
Project Director
Spurwink Services
Phone: (207) 462-5088

Maryann Corsello
Project Evaluator
University of New England
Biddeford, Maine
Phone: (207) 475-2525