About this resource
YOS believes all youth are capable of excellence. Our job is to provide the community-based support they need to meet challenges head on, discover their strengths and make healthy choices.
Youth Outreach Service (YOS) is a non-profit organization focused on helping at-risk youth in the Chicago area to reach their potential. For over 60 years, our focus has been on caring for teens that face challenges at home, in school and in the community.
Creating opportunities to help youth grow
YOS provides critical services in some of the highest need communities in Chicago. For many clients, the severity of their struggles runs deep.
Our goal is to inspire positive development so clients and their families can face challenges with confidence with the ongoing support they need to thrive for a lifetime.
YOS responds to the needs of youth where they are, whether that be within programs in schools, at clients’ homes and at our offices. We provide comprehensive services from our four service areas depending on each client’s needs: Counseling, Prevention, Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice.
“Together we have the opportunity to help youth and their families overcome challenges and celebrate their success.” - Jamie Noto, YOS Executive Director
Addressing the main challenges faced by youth, families and communities
In the Chicagoland area, there is an enormous need for services to help youth navigate difficult situations and overcome obstacles. YOS is that resource for more than 4,000 clients and their families per year.
- Substance Abuse - Each $1 invested in treatment equals $4 to $7 in savings on crime and criminal justice costs.
- Violence - 50% of victims of homicide in Chicago are between ages of 10 to 25.
- Mental Health - In a survey of Chicago-area youth, 32% reported feeling sad or hopeless, while 15% contemplated suicide.
- Family Conflict - Struggles at home are the main causes of homelessness, juvenile delinquency and poor academics.
- Juvenile Justice - Although children of color in Illinois, ages 10 to 17, are only 16% of the overall age group, they represent:
- 34% arrested
- 38% adjudicated
- 68% in residential placement
- Homelessness - 12,000+ youth without parents/guardians in Chicago who are homeless annually.