CharisTreeTo provide therapeutic, residential, educational, and vocational services to the Learning Disabled and Emotionally Challenged population between the ages of 13-22 years. This special-needs population includes adolescents and their families; adolescents in transition to lesser restrictive environments through the Transitional Housing Program; case-managed, independent-living young adults, 18-22 years of age; and re-entry young adults in preparation and linkage to community-support agencies for their transition into society as productive and contributing citizens.

  • Charis is committed to partnership with families and their community as a valuable colleague and resource.
  • Charis is committed to expand service to meet the growing and changing needs of youth and their families.
  • Charis will seek to hire, train, and develop the most talented and competent people available.



As a team, we believe that we can and will make a positive difference in our community and the lives of those we are committed to serve. As a team, we create an atmosphere that inspires mutual respect, trust, pride, and commitment. As a team, we support each other and recognize achievement. We promote the highest level of quality service.
As a team, we encourage cooperation, decision making through open communication, and continuous professional growth.



Charis Youth Center treatment programs were developed to serve youth and families challenged by emotional, economic, and systemic problems. Guided by the premise that youth and families have been neglected, confused, abused, and distraught, Charis provides nurturance, guidance, structure, and positive reinforcement toward empowering and enabling our clients to develop, grow, and reintegrate. Within this framework it is possible to change and/or modify behaviors that have inhibited development.The work at Charis is supported by four main concepts:

  1. The belief that youth should grow up in one environment that provides safety and nurturing and promotes a sense of belonging. In addition to belonging, it is central to Charis Youth Center’s philosophy that each youth have a sense of mastery of some significant skill, demonstrate independence, and promote generosity. This environment is preferably the family or extended family unit and efforts are made to preserve and return the youth to their home. In the cases where the home environment is unsuitable and/or unmanageable, Charis is committed to provide short- and long-term alternatives designed to help youth grow and mature to adulthood
  2. Charis attempts to maintain a strength-based approach designed to meet the needs of youth and families that have moved from placement to placement. This is based on the belief that security and trust can best be developed in a program focused on teaching skills and experiencing success in daily living.
  3. Children should reside and be treated in the least restrictive setting possible. Charis is committed to reintegrating and normalizing youth with their families or foster community whenever possible. This perspective involves conservative and highly monitored use of psychotropic medication, a concerted effort to integrate the youth into the community outside of psychiatric institutions, and Juvenile Hall. There is a commitment whenever possible to promote family unification and/or community-based services for family and youth relationship preservation.
  4. The relationships that Charis Youth Center staff builds with youth, families, placement agencies, and community-based programs are critical to success. Trust, cooperation, and mutual respect contribute to shared treatment objectives and goals. Treatments based on the concept that a combination of an accurate psychiatric assessment, insight-oriented psychotherapy, behavioral cognitive modification, effective case management, and systems-based family therapy are necessary components of a comprehensive treatment plan.