Be Part of the Solution
New Haven Youth and Family Services is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. We rely on tax-deductible contributions as well as in-kind donations from individuals, businesses and foundations to support our programs.
Your donations make moments like these last a lifetime. Find out how you can give today!
Ways To Give
- Arts & Crafts Materials
- Athletic Equipment
- Building Materials and Shop Equipment
- Access to Recreation Facilities and Theme Parks
Ask us about the many ways that you can give back to your community’s troubled youth. Your donations are what turn despair into hope.
A Kid Story: Meet Andy
A little over two years ago, “Andy”, came through our doors with a typical presentation: wounded, tired and angry. He wore thick glasses, had long wiry blonde hair, and a scowl of skepticism on his face that communicated the message we likely weren’t going to be able to impress or teach him much at all.
Andy had built up a resume that had earned him the right to be considered for our program: threatening to “destroy” his previous high school, bringing a knife onto the campus and consistently ditching classes, where he would escape to a local gathering of homeless adults. While on paper his offenses looked criminal, after further investigation, they quickly proved otherwise. Andy had a long history of being bullied by his peers. His empty threat to do damage to his school was a flawed attempt to keep others at bay. Bringing a knife to school was Andy’s approach to protect his only sister, who had also been the recipient of ongoing cruel treatment from peers. And finally, the elopement from school. Andy found value in ditching his classes to spend time with his mother a few miles away, where she resided in a homeless community. Albeit misguided, there seemed to be some logic to his behavior.
Our team was fortunate to have the opportunity to participate in the transformation of Andy’s life. In our therapeutic program, his posture slowly shifted away from anger and towards gratitude. Over the course of the two years Andy spent in treatment, he found solace in walking the track that wrapped around the backfield. With his head phones on, Andy would make rounds singing to his favorite music: German Heavy Metal. This walk became part of Andy’s rhythm during his journey in the program. To think, decompress and to sing.
He made and met his goal to complete his high school credits and receive a diploma, a feat that seemed far out of reach during his early years. Now enrolled in college, Andy’s plan is to get degrees in counseling so that he can one day be a positive change agent for the homeless population. We could not have picked a more perfect vocation for him.
Andy is definitely missed, but one only has to look to the track in our backfield and imagine our quirky friend belting out his favorite German tunes to bring our memories of him back to life. Rock on Andy!