JIFF has faithfully served Memphis youth as a 501(c)(3) since 1970 when a local chapter of Youth For Christ was launched by our founder, Chan Prosser. In 2005, under the leadership of Rick Carr, our non-profit Charter name was changed to JIFF. With our new name and leadership, our mission was narrowed to focus efforts on our interventions being provided to youth in the Memphis and Shelby County's juvenile justice system.
JIFF acquired the Abe Scharff YMCA in 2006 and moved in 2009, after a three million dollar renovation and expansion.
Since 2014, under the leadership of Richard Graham, JIFF has continued the legacy of serving our city's most vulnerable and marginalized youth. In 2016 one of Memphis Leadership Foundation's ministries, Mediation and Restitution Reconciliation Services (MARRS), merged with JIFF. This program receives referrals for lower risk first, second, or third time offenders from juvenile court with the goal of diverting continued criminal behaviors.
Since 2014, we have doubled the number of evidence-based programs we provide, our budget has increased by 26%, our staff has increased by 29%, and the number of youth we serve annually has increased by 75%. Jiff now averages serving 350 youth per year.
In 2020 we celebrated 50 years of changed lives GOD has transformed through the legacy and leadership of JIFF. Our past is etched with eternal impact and our future is marked by continued vision and expansion of God's kingdom.
tHE JIFF BUILDING ON LAUDERDALE
JIFF purchased the Abe Scharff building from the YMCA in 2006. After a successful building campaign and subsequent renovation, the new JIFF facility opened in 2009. With a commercial kitchen, a dining room, full gymnasium, a workout room, an education department and offices, JIFF is presently able to work with over 300 youth each year. With increased capacity and support, JIFF is poised to help up to 700 youth each year.