How YFT Changes Lives
Youth For Tomorrow’s mission is to provide children and families with the opportunity to focus their lives and develop the confidence, skills, intellectual ability, spiritual insight and moral integrity, based on Godly principles, resulting In positive changes to the benefit of the child, the family, the community, and nation. This mission is carried out by YFT’s 380 highly skilled professional staff members through the following programs and services:
Behavioral Health Services was launched in 2012. Our therapists conducted 2,390 therapy sessions for 246 patients in its first year. In its 7th year, YFT provided over 28,000 sessions for over 3,500 patients—a 1071% increase since 2012 and growing. YFT has six regional offices providing behavioral or mental health counseling, diagnostic assessments, crisis intervention, outpatient services, therapeutic day treatment, in-home counseling and mentoring services to individuals of all ages, families and veterans.
Residential Treatment Services are available for boys and girls ages 11-18 from around the world whose personal lives are in crisis. Our family style campus contains 11 homes, with Christian house parents-who love them and provide structure and discipline. The backbone of this program is the Clinical Counseling Services which includes individual, peer group and family format to help our children overcome the traumatic life experiences they already have had to face in their young lives. Our clinicians also challenge thinking errors, motivate new ideas, encourage healthy decisions and strengthen our residents’ capacity to function productively.
Girls on a Journey program serves the increasing numbers of domestic teen girls who come to YFT as victims of sex trafficking, sexual abuse or sexual exploitation. It provides safe and secure residential, educational and intensive counseling services that rescue them from their victimization and help them create renewed lives. Approximately 83% of the young girls that reside at YFT’s campus have been sexually exploited or abused in some way. Launched in 2009, 270 girls have been served by the program in its first decade.
Mommy & Me program offers pregnant teens and young mothers aged 13-21 and their babies a special home on the YFT campus. YFT provides a nurturing home with parenting classes and 24-hour nursing care so that the mothers may continue their education with childcare provided. They also receive counseling and case management. A total of 188 mothers and 195 children have been cared for since 2007.
Educational Services are provided to each child placed in our care with a fully accredited, on campus secondary school. Many of the students enter YFT some 1-3 years behind grade level, many needing special education services or have been chronically truant in attending school prior to YFT. Our professional educational staff provides these children an opportunity to learn in a small classroom setting with specialized instruction and technological resources so they may reach their potential and to earn a high school diploma or a GED. Virginia high school graduation requirements mandate every student to take at least one “online” course, with other such courses to accelerate their learning due to lost time in the classroom.
Therapeutic Music & Arts and Creative Interventions provides a positive outlet for participants to explore their interests and natural artistic talents. Some residents find it difficult to communicate verbally, yet are able to express their emotions through various forms of music and art. In addition, the program provides individuals with critical thinking and communication skills, and helps them explore related career opportunities.
Post-Secondary Scholarships are available to current and past YFT residents who qualify for college, university, vocational or proprietary training institutions. A total of 286 youngsters have benefited from these scholarships and have gone on to successful professions and careers in their communities.
New Life Ministry provides each YFT resident with his or her own Bible, Bible study materials and off-campus spiritual field trips. These offer a “Game Plan For Life” guideposts for living a life with Godly principles, strong personal character and provide references for the Word. Each month, we schedule off-campus activities throughout the Washington, DC region with the purpose of strengthening their resolve to lead lives enriched by their diverse spiritual experiences.
Aftercare and Transitional Services provides guidance, encouragement, and timely and targeted financial support to assist the boys and girls who have completed YFT’s Residential Program or have aged out of Foster Care. Many of these young adults lack the family support system needed to face life’s challenges. Over 200 former residents have been helped with continuing their education by enrolling in local colleges or a specialized trade schools through an endowed scholarship program. Some additional Aftercare Services include guidance to managing their finances such as budgeting, balancing a checkbook, establishing a credit record needed to rent an apartment, purchase a car for transportation to school or work, or to purchase essentials for everyday living.