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Anti-Violence Nonprofit Roca Opens Holyoke Office

An organization committed to keeping young men out of the poverty-to-prison pipeline is expanding its presence in western Massachusetts.

Roca has opened a new office in Holyoke.  It is being run as a satellite of Roca’s program in Springfield. 

Christine Judd, Roca Springfield’s executive director called the Holyoke office a “game changer.”

" We are serving 40 young men and we have the capacity to serve 75 young men out of this site," said Judd.

Roca works with men between the ages of 17-24, who because of their involvement in crime or gangs are statistically likely to end up either in prison or dead. 

For each Roca client, the program involves years of intensive outreach focused on life skills, changing behavior, and vocational training.          

The record-setting tenure of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno. The 2011 tornado and its recovery that remade the largest city in Western Massachusetts. The fallout from the deadly COVID outbreak at the Holyoke Soldiers Home. Those are just a few of the thousands and thousands of stories WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill has covered for WAMC in his nearly 17 years with the station.