Every young person has a family unconditionally committed to nurture, protect, and guide them to successful adulthood.
Plummer’s mission is to set a standard of excellence that improves outcomes for young people in or at risk of entering state care by deeply engaging youth, families, and the systems that impact them to develop permanent family relationships, skills, and community connections.
- Committing to racial equity by actively examining our services, behaviors, and structures for the purpose of eliminating biases, policies, and practices that may perpetuate racism or inequity.
- Addressing and dismantling injustices faced by marginalized/vulnerable populations/youth by advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in all areas of the organization.
- Engaging and including families and other adults and partners on a collaborative team to help move the youth toward a permanent family.
- Empowering young people and their families to identify, understand, and express their needs and to capitalize on their unique strengths so they can guide their services.
- Creating and following a youth-guided, family driven, individualized, trauma-informed treatment plan that recognizes family as the primary healing agents, prioritizes permanency, and includes preparedness and community goals as appropriate.
- Protecting the continuity of youths’ relationships and attachments to family and other caring adults.
- Advancing the development of social-emotional, educational, vocational, and life skills.
- Embracing continuous learning by utilizing experience, data, research, and best practices to deliver, demonstrate, and promote effective work.
- Leveraging the knowledge, learning, and experiences between our service delivery programs and our permanency practice leadership work, adding value to each from the other.
- Leading other child welfare providers and systems toward the delivery of permanency best practices through training, consultation, and coaching
Our History and Evolution
Caroline Plummer cared for her siblings after the death of her parents and knew the many challenges facing children in her beloved and growing city of Salem, Massachusetts. At her death in 1854, Caroline Plummer generously bequeathed more than $23,000 for the founding of a “farm school of reform for boys.” By 1855, ten Trustees had been appointed to establish a “school for the instruction, employment and reformation of juvenile offenders.”
Although Plummer was established as a reform school that served as an alternative to jail, it also functioned as a boys’ orphanage. Residents aged five to 18 attended school, and church and worked on Salem’s Winter Island. Plummer operated as a farm – and also ran a printing press and had a marching band.
As theories of psychology, child development, and the social service delivery system evolved, so did Plummer. In the 1950s, records suggest the organization ceased to operate as a reform school and instead served as a group home for teenaged boys. Referrals to the home came from the Department of Social Services (now called the Department of Children and Families) rather than the court or private families.
In 2006, Plummer started a period of growth spurred by emerging knowledge and data on best practices in caring for youth in child welfare. Plummer staff became innovators when, in 2010, they developed an Intervention Model emphasizing that young people need families, skills and community to become healthy adults. By 2012, Plummer had begun serving boys and girls in residential and community-based settings.
We changed our name to Plummer Youth Promise in 2017 to reflect both the commitment of the program to connect young people in foster care or group care with permanent families and the promise of a successful outcome.
Today, Plummer Youth Promise is a direct service provider, a permanency technical expert providing consultancy services to other government agencies and providers, and a thought leader in the field of child welfare.
Below is a timeline with information we know, and some (in italics) research suggests being valid.
Established a Consultation and Training Division to make permanency accessible to youth beyond those in our direct care by providing training, coaching, and consulting to service providers and public agencies.
Started Community-Based Apartment Program for young people who turn 18 while in state care and have no family with whom to live.
Added on-site Supported Apartment for up to four youth ages 16-22 who no longer qualified for a group home and who had no family with whom to live; in 2016 added capacity for two additional young men
Name changed to The Plummer Home for Boys (boys may have started attending public schools during this era, and the operation of the farm ceased)
Incorporation of the Plummer Farm School of Reform for Boys (up to 40 boys with a variety of circumstances attended, from a variety of communities)