For 51 years, Youth & Family Services has been a strong advocate for youth in our community.
YFS staff members have worked with parents, educators, law enforcement, other non-profit organizations, and community leaders to ensure that the services we provide continue to effectively meet the needs of children. Although our services have been a critical component in helping families become capable, caring, and contributing members of the community, we realize that more must be done to reduce the number of children on waiting lists and address existing gaps in services. Expanding our East Adams Street facility will allow YFS to address the following issues:
• Working families need quality care for their children, especially very young children.
• Middle school youth have unique needs.
• For healthy development, children need both their mothers and their fathers.
• Children living in chaos, with food insecurity, or in inadequate housing usually also have unmet health needs.
• Methamphetamine and alcohol use by youth are at an all-time high in our community.
• Individuals in healthy relationships are happier and more productive.
When YFS originally built the East Adams Street campus in 2003, we were serving 8,500 children and their families annually. Today, we are serving more than 14,000 children and we are desperate for more space.
The YFS East Adams Building Expansion Project will add 67,525 sq. ft. of indoor program space and 32,794 sq. ft. of playground/outdoor learning space. This expansion will allow us to provide transformative opportunities for more children and families by increasing the depth of our current services and adding new programming to meet unmet needs within our community.
The new two-story wing will house our Child Development Center, Fatherhood First program, Healthy Marriage & Relationship Education project, a half-size gym, and a greenhouse classroom. Health Advocacy program offices and a new after school/summer program for middle school youth will occupy the existing Child Development Center space.
The Girls Inc. and Nutrition Services programs will remain in their existing space and small functional improvements will be made in these areas. A larger, more secure playground and green space will be located between Girls Inc. and the new building wing.
• Early childhood classrooms arranged in neighborhoods following continuity of care concepts to allow children to age through the program together
• Middle school program offers a safe environment for learning and encourages positive relationships with trusted adults
• Increased security features maximize programming for both indoor and outdoor learning spaces
• Greenhouse classroom to support health and wellness initiative and YFS garden project
• Accommodating space for health advocacy, father-focused, and relationship-based programming
• Includes consideration for future expansion
• Walking distance to General Beadle Elementary School with access to its library and community health services
• Expanding our existing location reduces operating costs and increases convenience for families