SHYC Publishes the 2020-2021 Annual Report – 50th Anniversary Special Edition

The 50th Anniversary Special Edition Annual Report is now available here.

A special thanks to the staff, volunteers and community for their steadfast commitment to the SHYC. It has sustained us for 50 years! Thank you to our donors who believe in our mission. Your support has made it possible to provide essential services to Shaker youth as well as to maintain an excellent staff. Our programming has provided invaluable opportunities for new beginnings for the multitude of youth we have interacted with over the last 50 years.

It is our sincere hope that we have served you well. SHYC has demonstrated that it has the strength and resiliency to maneuver through this pandemic and continue its services. Although we could not celebrate this milestone in-person, we still want to thank you for supporting the work we do.

For half a century, the Shaker Heights Youth Center (SHYC) has distinguished itself as a leader in the field of community social service by fostering the emotional, behavioral, and developmental well being of a diverse spectrum of youth in the Shaker community. The Youth Center is dedicated to nurturing youth through their adolescent years. The support we receive from you makes our efforts possible.

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)

Shaker Heights Youth Center Publishes 2018-2019 Annual Report

Shaker Heights, OH – The Shaker Heights Youth Center, a critical provider of provide a wider range of services to address the changing needs of adolescents and their families, has published its 2018-2019 Annual Report.

The 2018-2019 Annual Report highlights the Youth Center’s success stories and programs that include growth amid unexpected economic, political, and social developments and challenges that have required rapid adjustments. The Report features departments’ statistics, and, as always, emphasizes the impact of programs. These collaborative efforts ensure stability and growth within the communities the Youth Center serves.

The 2018-2019 Annual Report is available to shareholders and other interested parties here.

2017 Annual Report

From the Executive Director

Dear Supporter:

Change has begun to take shape at the Shaker Heights Youth Center. The Shaker Heights City Schools have instituted new programs that have successfully cut down on suspensions and expulsions. With the need for our alternatives to suspension and expulsion services declining, we have begun to explore how we can best serve the youth in the Shaker community. This last year we began working with the Innovative Center for Personalized Learning & Family Engagement (IC) located in the Stephanie Tubbs Jones Community Building where we served 27 youth. We look forward to continuing and expanding this collaboration this year.

Last year the Youth Center partnered with Kent State University’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative in a program named Making Our Own Space (MOOS). Originally a City of Shaker Heights grant funded program, the Youth Center stepped in to secure funding through a Starting Point Out-of-School Time grant. Kent State provides the program and we supply the administrative support. Eighteen Shaker youth have received hands on experience learning urban design.

As some programs continue to move forward, the Shaker Heights MyCom collaboration (as described in our Annual Report), under the leadership of Sharon Bell, is an exemplary example of this. The MyCom Shaker Youth Council is extremely active in community service and leadership projects. They have contributed the youth voice in the founding of the City’s new program The Getaway, a free afterschool teen center run by the Shaker Heights Recreation Department.

Our MyCom staff, in partnership with Youth Opportunities Unlimited, made theSummerJobsprogramahugesuccessagaininShaker. Seventy- veShaker students were placed at 19 Shaker Heights worksites with the Shaker Schools alone providing eight of those sites. For many youth it was their rst paid employment and 97% successfully completed their summer job. Advanced job preparation training and close supervision by Youth Center staff and the placement site supervisors contributed to a successful employment experience for the youth.

One of the Youth Center’s original programs, the Student Assistance services at the Shaker Heights High School and Middle School, continues to successfully serve students as it has for 40 years. The program provides a wide variety of opportunities for youth to receive academic, emotional and behavioral support. Last year 107 Shaker Students were served by our experienced and caring staff.

Thank you again for your continued support.

Sincerely, John Lisy

2017 Annual Report (PDF)

2016 Annual Report

From the Executive Director

Dear Supporter:

I am celebrating 20 years as the Director of the Shaker Heights Youth Center and it has been a truly challenging and rewarding experience. The agency has grown in a number of ways. We have added the Intensive Prevention Program, the Academic Success Aid Program, and MyCom out-of-school time programming. Our budget has increased to three times the amount it was when I came to the agency, all from support coming from sources outside of Shaker, and with our sole focus on providing services for the youth in the Shaker community. The Youth Center has received three awards from the State of Ohio for excellence in services due to the amazing work of a dedicated staff. I take this opportunity to acknowledge their dedication to the youth we serve and the length of time they have been with the agency; Harriet Lyons 19 years, Terry Karp 17 years, Tameka Taylor 16 years, Laura Chapman and Svetlana Wolfson 13 years, Carolyn Dolan 10 years, Sharon Bell 8 years and Cheryl Darden, Emily Geier and Alicia Sims 5 years. It is truly an honor to work with such talented people.

Looking ahead we are working in a constantly changing environment. Funding and priorities are shifting and the Youth Center is up to the task. We are small and exible enough to embrace the change while continuing to offer superior services to the youth in the Shaker community. We look forward to developing programs that meet the evolving needs of the community.

Finally, I want to thank all of the individuals that support and nurture the Youth Center. Being involved in the Shaker community has allowed me to work with great partners; the Youth Center Board of Trustees, Shaker Heights City Schools, the City of Shaker Heights (the Mayor, Council, Police Department and Recreation Department), the Shaker Heights Public Library, First Unitarian Church, Heights Christian Church, our neighborhood and community organizations and the many individuals who advocate for youth in this extraordinary city. In four years I look forward to celebrating the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Shaker Heights Youth Center. This will be a tribute to all who champion youth development.

Sincerely, John Lisy

Click the link to download our 2016 Annual Report.

2016 Annual Report (PDF)