In 1971, a concerned group of Berwyn community organizers applied for and received state funds to deliver crisis intervention for homeless youth and drug abuse counseling for underserved teens. Three years later, the program was formally incorporated as Youth in Crisis, Inc. Over the next three decades, services were expanded to help teens involved with the police, street-gangs, and school truancy.
In 2007, the agency changed its name to Youth Crossroads, Inc. to better reflect the evolution of services — a transition from primarily reacting to crisis situations, to an emphasis on proactive support and prevention that help youth learn the skills needed to navigate life’s challenges.
Since its creation, Youth Crossroads has served tens of thousands of youth and their families from Berwyn, Cicero, Stickney, and neighboring towns. We’ve partnered with more than 100 community organizations to create a network of referral sources to address the complex issues confronting youth and families. Today Youth Crossroads offers community youth, generally ages 10-17, opportunities to heal, grow, lead, and thrive.
Mission & Impact
Youth Crossroads’ mission is to act in the best interest of youth, guiding them through life’s challenges, and inspiring them to discover new opportunities for personal development, healthy relationships, and positive community involvement.
Youth Crossroads provides a wide range of supports including counseling, crisis intervention, school/community-based trauma response and prevention programs, after-school enrichment, and youth leadership development. We have been coordinating ground-breaking trauma training to local police departments, educators, and parents to teach them about the impact trauma has on youth. In addition, we collaborate extensively with local school districts, government agencies, police departments, and other human service organizations to connect with youth in need of assistance and ensure they receive appropriate care.
Youth Crossroads frequently connects with an individual when s/he is in crisis or experiencing profound challenges that feel insurmountable. Students may be wrestling with trauma-related conditions, anger management problems, identity issues, or poor decision-making skills. Their families may be dealing with unemployment, loss of a loved one, separation/divorce, domestic violence, or other destabilizing situations. Our staff works with each individual and family to identify their needs and create a path toward improving their situations. To ensure that those who would most benefit can easily partake in programs, all services are bilingual and provided at no cost to participants.