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Restoring trust in family and one another

June 8, 2011

We learn at a very young age about sharing and the joy it brings.

Being able to give is an integral part of our relationships with one another.

Youth Villages Board Chairman Mike Bruns (left) and CEO Pat Lawler (right)

For families, giving is a result of love and trust. And it’s about sharing experiences and emotions and frustrations with those who have close ties and strong bonds. In many ways, that is what Youth Villages strives to do with children and families – restore that trust and ability to share.

That’s why our work is challenging and rewarding. Our staff is committed to helping every child succeed, to learn how to trust others again. Your support of our programs helps ensure we’re not only able to continue that important work, but expand it to help more children and families.

Our footprints of success are left in all the communities we serve, and our efforts are being recognized. A new book by Thomas Tierney and Joel Fleishman, titled “Give Smart: Philanthropy That Gets Results,” provides practical guidance for donors who want to get the most impact from their giving. It’s a great honor for Youth Villages to be included as an example of an organization that delivers real results for the investment donors make in us. Journalist and author David Bornstein recently wrote about Youth Villages in the New York Times’ “Opinionator” blog, highlighting why Youth Villages focuses on helping troubled children in their homes in partnership with the child’s family and extended support systems.

Recognition like this is wonderful – especially for our frontline staff who works so hard for children and families.

But for me, the real joy comes from meeting with children and families who have completed our programs. You can see and feel their energy as they discuss their experiences and their emotions. They speak of their past simply as it was and discuss a future of promise and success. They finish each other’s sentences. Most importantly, they laugh.

They interact.

They share.

Patrick W. Lawler
Youth Villages Chief Executive Officer

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