Hamden, Connecticut


  • Community name:  Hamden
  • Website:   http://www.hamden.com/
  • Population:  60,668
  • Graduation rate86.2%
  • Youth poverty rate:  7.7%

Overview

Hamden, a second-time 100 Best winner, was again honored for its work in creating a safe environment for youth, and providing resources and organizations that promote community involvement. For example, the Hamden High School Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) chapter aims to prevent youth from making poor choices, particularly related to underage drinking, drug use, risky and impaired driving, violence and suicide. SADD also develops the Freshman Survival Guide, which encourages freshman to get involved in school clubs and activities, provides tips for avoiding destructive behaviors and debunks myths about high school. In addition, the Hamden Positive Choices campaign promotes a safe drug- and alcohol-free prom and graduation season for high school students and educates parents on the legal consequences if they provide teens with alcohol. The community also provides resources for improving outcomes for youth, such as Hamden’s Partnership for Young Children, which helps families and the community to work collaboratively to plan, coordinate and improve services for all children. Similarly, the Educational Care Collaborative works to improve access to mental health services and provides social support services for families and children.

Community Programs

  • The Educational Care Collaborative (ECC) works with youth whose social, emotional or behavioral needs interfere with learning in school. The program aims to improve access to mental health services for families and provides social support for families and children.
  • Hamden's Partnership for Young Children (HPYC) is a partnership of nonprofit organizations, comprising local professionals, parents and grandparents, who help families and the community to work collaboratively to plan, coordinate and improve services for all children.
  • The Hamden Positive Choices campaign promotes a safe drug- and alcohol-free prom and graduation season for high school students and educates parents on the legal consequences if they provide teens with alcohol.
  • The Quinnipiac Valley Health District works closely with schools to promote health in the community with a school-based health center that offers primary and mental health services to approximately 400 students.
  • Hamden High School’s Club of Students Against Destructive Decisions worked with the student organization Student Leaders of Hamden to create the Freshman Survival Guide that encourages freshman to get involved in school clubs and activities, provides tips for avoiding destructive behaviors and debunks myths about high school.

Youth Voices

“I hope someday to offer my family the opportunity a community like Hamden has offered to me. Hamden teaches class and character in the classroom and in the town.”

– Rachel

“I didn't really like school, let alone learning, but when I came to Hamden, I learned to enjoy both of those things.”

– Marc