For Immediate Release
November 4, 2019
Recognizing the need for seamless educational services, support and programs for children from babies up to young adults, Pocono Services for Families and Children announces a merger with Monroe County Youth Employment Services.
The board of directors of both organizations approved the consolidation, which has also been okayed by the state and takes effect this month.
As part of the merger, YES will now be known as Youth Empowerment Services, broadening its scope and program offerings.
“It will be the same great organization with added support,” said Peter Alasty, executive director of YES. “This change opens up new and exciting opportunities for the youth we serve.”
The two agencies have been working toward combining their efforts for the last few months, but have been community partners for the last couple years. YES students have worked during the summer at PSFC’s centers in East Stroudsburg and Tobyhanna (The Mountain Center/TMC).
“This collaboration will let us establish the cradle to career continuum of care, education, support and guidance that we have long strived to fully develop,” said PSFC Executive Director Tim Lee. “We have many projects planned.”
PSFC has served and educated preschoolers in Monroe County since 1965, but in 2016 began serving infants/toddlers and started a school-age program for kids in kindergarten through sixth grade. A summer camp at TMC for school-age children has been offered for three years. While PSFC has assisted young adults in the families it serves, the merger marks an official start of programming for this age group.
Radio and TV shows produced by YES teens, with some equipment/operations at TMC, is one of the new initiatives being developed. The YES team will work closely with PSFC’s family and community engagement team to provide services needed or requested by young adults and their families. Youth involved in YES’ Summer Work Experience Program (SWEP) will continue to work in jobs at PSFC, such as in food service, classrooms and offices.
“Each of our agency’s connections and relationships in the community will mutually enhance our goals and objectives,” Lee stated.
Alasty will have offices at both TMC and at YES’ current location in Tannersville in the PA CareerLink of Monroe County offices.
As this merger unfolds, information will be updated on the agency’s websites, social media and informational materials.
YES provides leadership, career exploration, employability, and entrepreneurial training programs which encourage and assist youth, ages 12 to 24, in taking an active role in their future profession. It offers guidance and assistance through workshops, seminars, job shadowing, mentorships and work experience. The nonprofit’s mission is to help youth determine the career goal for their future, establish their path, and help them in the pursuit of that career. One of its programs is Project Success, which meets twice a month for nine months covering topics such as resume writing, mock interviews and teambuilding, and ends with a mentorship/job shadowing opportunity. Eligible participants are enrolled in SWEP, which is for academically or economically disadvantaged youth to gain work experience for six weeks in the summer, learning employability skills firsthand while they earn minimum wage for some summer or back-to-school spending money.
PSFC’s mission is to provide resources for the evolving needs of community children and families, in support of efforts to achieve their goals. A United Way partner, the nonprofit agency serves more than 300 children from infants to 6th grade and continues to expand services and implement new programs. Besides Head Start, Pre-K Counts and the highest quality child care, it offers emergency assistance, family engagement initiatives, and volunteer opportunities. Parents are assisted with identifying family and personal goals — including healthcare, housing and employment — and given a variety of training opportunities and resources to reach their individual goals.
PSFC has centers/classrooms in Coolbaugh Township, East Stroudsburg, Smithfield Township and Marshalls Creek. It is accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs (NAEYC) and has earned a Keystone Star 4 state ranking.
In addition to classrooms, The Mountain Center is home to several health/human service agencies and community organizations that assist the entire family. TMC is the National 2019 recipient of the Dr. Edward Zigler Award for Innovation in Community Development from the National Head Start Association. For more information, visit www.psfc.org.