Behavioral Health Menu

Thriving Youth & Community (TYC) Program

'Working together to build schools and communities
where youth can thrive'

Project/Program Description

The TYC program provides Santa Cruz City Schools with an avenue to support youth wellbeing, connect to school and community, and to reduce disciplinary incidents. Through a trauma-informed culturally and developmentally responsive model the program will support our student’s academic, social and emotional wellness.


Youth must attend a school within the Santa Cruz City Schools (SCCS) District.

Referrals can be made through parent/guardian, peers, probation/law enforcement, or school administration. Youth self-referrals are also encouraged.

Direct Referral Link

Program Overview


TYC Program Description


TYC Program Description

Substance Use Disorder (SUD) Services Offered 

  • Initial and ongoing assessments to best support student wellbeing
  • Invincible Youth and Friday Night Live are available to all students to build school connection and skills

Three pathways provide services for all levels of need. Students may participate simultaneously between Pathways 2 and 3, intervention and cessation.:

  • Pathway 1: Prevention - 8 weeks - Stanford Cannabis Toolkit and Invincible Youth interactive activities.
  • Pathway 2: Intervention - The Seven Challenges substance use program and Invincible Youth designed to motivate youth to evaluate their lives, consider the changes they wish to make and succeed in achieving goals.
  • Pathway 3: Cessation - 8 sessions of Project EX, a smoking and vaping cessation program.

Goal & Outcomes

  • Improve youth wellbeing and positive youth development by increasing
    protective factors and decreasing risk factors

    • If we engage cannabis using teens and complete intake and assessment

    • Then divert teens into one of three pathways

    • We will see increased understanding of the impacts of cannabis, Increased refusal skills, decreased cannabis use and increased youth connectedness

  • Prevent youth involvement in the juvenile justice system

    • If we engage system partners (schools, probation, law enforcement)

    • Then conduct outreach about TYC, train partners on deferment program. Prevention/intervention strategies, referral process and supportive youth development strategies

    • We will see decrease in suspensions, Decrease in juvenile probation engagement, System Partners diverting youth to prevention/ intervention/treatment resources.

Supporting Our Students

  • Anyone can refer students and student self-referrals are encouraged - As front-line staff, engaging with youth daily, you can support students to reach their full potential.
  • Shifting the perception that everyone uses Cannabis - The majority of our students do not use cannabis, in 2019, 81% of our 11th grade youth reported not using marijuana in the past 30 days.
  • Assessments and Pathways will occur both during and after school - TYC Rapid Response Team members will conduct virtual or in-person assessments with youth and identify the appropriate pathway. Sessions will be on-going for youth to join at any point.
  • Intervene with students prior to referrals for disciplinary incidents - Ease of access to substances is a key factor in youth use. In 2019, 65% of Santa Cruz City School 9th graders reported “fairly easy” to “very easy” access to cannabis. Students using or misusing substances can be supported as well as those facing disciplinary actions.

Our Community Partners

Disabled Access and Spanish Available



Have Questions or Need Additional Information?

For Referral Questions
Adriana Mata
831-728-6445 or email

Direct Referral Link

For Programmatic Questions
Monica Nicholas
831-359-8450 or email

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