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New release by charity expert cites Youth Villages success story

September 10, 2013

With Charity for AllYouth Villages is highlighted as a model organization in a new book by charity expert Ken Stern, “With Charity for All: Why Charities Are Failing and a Better Way to Give.”

Stern, a former head of NPR and longtime nonprofit executive, wrote the book after three years spent researching the nonprofit sector and discovering how few charities could provide verifiable success stories.

“We direct enormous resources to this sector and place substantial social responsibilities on it, yet the vast majority of charities can’t demonstrate any commensurate return on those investments,” Stern writes.

“I learned that it’s easy to find a nonprofit’s glossy fundraising brochures and carefully crafted inspirational videos. However, I discovered, they often mask the group’s underlying problems, ranging from inefficiency and waste to outright fraud. I also had a much harder time turning up charities that could prove they were making important, measurable differences in people’s lives, though I did find a few.”

In a chapter titled “Dawn of the New Charity,” Stern profiles Youth Villages as one organization with a highly successful, evidence-based program, which benefited from rigorous attention to the long-term success of children and families, commitment to successful treatment philosophies and strategic planning.

“Innovative, results-driven, flexible and strategic, Youth Villages is literally a textbook case, studied at Harvard Business School. Its success is a testament to the possibility of reinvention and the benefits of investment in strategy, research, and infrastructure, and a vote for dramatic expansion despite all the hobbles of the charitable system.”

“With Charity for All” is available at, Barnes & Noble and other book sellers.

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