Help Is Here: Center for Youth and Family Solutions steps up after abuse or trauma

03, Apr 2017

Peoria Journal Star

Things were not looking good for Angela.

After the local police picked her up on a curfew violation, it became apparent it wasn’t the first time the 14-year-old had been wandering the streets after midnight or had run away from home. And, it certainly wasn’t the first time law enforcement had to intervene.

With her mother in prison, Angela and her four younger siblings had been bounced around with extended family. However, her ongoing behavioral issues made it hard for any of her family to manage her. Her anger issues even began erupting at school which caused concern that she could be at risk for entering the juvenile justice system if things didn’t change.
The school contacted the Center for Youth and Family Solutions. The social service agency has a special program that works with teens like Angela called the Youth, Family and Community Outreach. They immediately began to work with Angela and her entire family. A caseworker helped Angela identify triggers that prompted outbursts and helped her develop positive coping mechanisms for her anger. The caseworker worked with her family system, her school and her friends. As a result, Angela has come a long way, and remarks that she’s a “totally different kid” from when they had first met.

About Center for Youth and Family Solutions

Programs: Its five program areas all focus on serving children and families who have experienced life-changing trauma, abuse and neglect, or other significant life challenges. Annually serves over 18,000 individuals and 8,000 families, in 37 counties throughout central Illinois and the Quad Cities.

• Child welfare: Families and foster care, more than 1,300 children a year.

• Adoption: More than 40 newborns and more than 700 older children since the agency opened five years ago.

• Youth, Family and Community Outreach: 24/7 response to runaways and interventions with at-risk youth in the community.

• Behavioral Health Counseling: Provides counseling for both children and adults — including in-home mental health services for seniors facing depression or grief and loss issues.

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