2019 Annual Report

From the President

Dear Friends and Supporters of the Shaker Heights Youth Center:

Another fantastic year for the Shaker Heights Youth Center. I hate to sound repetitive, but the agency continues to meet goals of helping and nurturing young adults as they encounter the proverbial bumps in the road on their journey to becoming productive members ofsociety. The question is not if our youth will have difficulty along thepath, but when, and the SHYC is always ready to step up and assist during challenging periods. I believe that growing up is not easy, and with constant changes such as social media, technology, and familydynamics, the minefield that one must navigate gets more challengingevery day.

The Youth Center staff, along with the programs, continue to be firstrate and I would like to personally congratulate the staff on another rewarding year. This nurturing would not be possible without the buy in of the Shaker Heights City School District, The City of Shaker Heights, the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga Country and MyCom Youth Development Initiative of Greater Cleveland/The Cleveland Foundation who provide thefinancial support.

Now that I have transitioned to an empty nester with children who have successfully graduated college, I constantly think back to the expression that “it takes a village to raise a child”. Shaker Heights, the community, understands that and I believe does an excellent job in preparing our youth to go out into the world and be passionate andfind a calling.

I would once again like to ask all who read this to give of yourselfto help someone who is currently going through a difficult time. Myexperience continues to show that the reward is much greater than the effort expended.

Thank you.

Donald Gries

From the Executive Director

Dear Friends of the Shaker Heights Youth Center:

As we approach our fiftieth anniversary of serving the Shaker Community, Icannot help but look forward AND back. The Shaker Heights Youth Center has a rich history of service. From its founding by the Shaker PTA Council, individuals from the Shaker Heights Board of Education and Shaker Heights High School, City of Shaker Heights, Dads’ Club and Heights Clergy Council, we have been a collaborative entity focused on serving Shaker youth. Under the initial leadership of Fran King and Anne Landefeld, the organization grew to over twenty partners and began a drop-in center for Shaker teens. The City of Shaker Heights and Shaker Heights City Schoolswere the first to step forward with valuable financial support and they continue to contribute significantly.

Although programs and funding sources have expanded, many of the key strengths of the Youth Center have remained consistent throughout the years. The Shaker Heights Youth Center remains committed to Shaker youth and continues to collaborate with many organizations and individuals who share our passion for helping youth reach their full potential. It is gratifying to work with so many wonderful individuals and groups in the Shaker community. It is because of them that we have in place a large array of supports for our youth. We continue to work to improve and increase those supports.

The future looks bright. The organization is stable, fiscally sound and has atalented and caring staff. The Youth Center is beginning a planning process that will carry us into the future. We are excited about the transition over thenext five years that will build on a solid base as well as add new ideas andexpertise to the organization.

On a personal note, I am very proud of the staff and Board of the Shaker Heights Youth Center and the work they do every day.

We ask that you continue to support us on our journey as we grow to better serve this community.

Sincerely, John Lisy

Click here to download our 2018 Annual Report (PDF)