Youth Villages stories

For the second year in a row, The NonProfit Times and Best Companies Group have named Youth Villages as one of the 50 Best Nonprofit Organizations to Work For in the United States.

One of the largest providers of services to troubled children and their families in the country, Youth Villages was founded in Memphis in 1986. This year, nearly 2,300 counselors, teachers and staff will help more than 17,000 children with serious emotional and behavioral problems and their families.

Staff works from more than 60 locations in 10 states, including Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and the District of Columbia. Last week, Youth Villages announced that it will begin providing services in Oregon, following a merger with ChristieCare, a provider of residential and educational services there. The merger will allow the introduction of intensive in-home services programs throughout the states.

Youth Villages, the American Heart Association and the Visiting Nurse Service of New York were the only three nonprofits in the top 50 with more than 2,000 employees.

Other organizations honored include the Wounded Warrior Project, LIVESTRONG and The Grammy Foundation. The complete list is published in The NonProfit Times’ April 2011 issue.

“To earn this distinction two years in a row is a real testament to the commitment of Youth Villages’ employees,” said Patrick W. Lawler, chief executive officer. “Our employees do not have easy jobs but they bring passion and dedication to their work every day. They are on the front lines 24/7, meeting the needs of children who have sometimes suffered from abuse and neglect and have very challenging mental health issues – and strengthening and restoring their families. Through our in-home and community programs, counselors respond at all hours to families in crisis. It’s inspiring to know they gave our organization such top ratings.

“Our consistently high success rates and continual improvements in services to young people are a result of the hard work of the Youth Villages team. We strive to make every effort to provide a supportive work environment and culture, good benefits, the latest technology and comprehensive training. To receive this award a second time demonstrates our commitment to our employees and strengthens our resolve to become even better next year.”

Youth Villages offers a wide array of programs, including intensive in-home services, residential treatment, foster care and adoption, transitional living services, mentoring and crisis services. Youth Villages’ focus on strengthening families consistently produces an 80 percent success rate of children living successfully at home even two years after completing a Youth Villages program. Youth Villages has been recognized by Harvard Business School and U.S. News & World Report, and was identified by The White House as one of the nation’s most promising results-oriented nonprofit organizations. For more information about Youth Villages, visit

For more information on the Best NonProfit Organizations to Work For program, visit