The Bridge Youth Services began operations in 1973, initially funded as a demonstration project from the United Way of Wyoming Valley. The project’s purpose and focus since its inception has been to serve as an advocate for youth with special emphasis on meeting the changing needs of youth, families, and the community. From our grassroots beginning as a “store-front drop-in center” the program has grown to include seven distinct service areas, employing over 30 professional staff, and utilizing the talents of over 400 volunteers. Our program provides services to more than 2,000 youth annually.
Recognizing the ever-changing pressures faced by youth and their families, The Bridge has remained adaptive and responsive with a philosophy deeply rooted in the positive worth of young people
The Bridge staff and volunteers provide a wide range of services in home, office, school, or community. Current services include youth mentoring programs, crisis intervention, and aftercare for runaway and homeless youth, including emergency shelter and transportation, prevention, and diversionary counseling programs fro adolescents and their families, and life skills and parenting education programs for both teens and adults.
Over fifty percent of all referrals are received directly from youth themselves or other family members. Other sources include school districts, law enforcement agencies, other social service providers, community groups, and concerned citizens. All services are voluntary in nature and individually designed to meet specific family needs. Services are provided by qualified and trained professional staff members.
The Bridge Youth Services is a component program of Catholic Social Services of the Wyoming Valley, a fully accredited, community based, family counseling agency. Funding is provided through allocations from area United Ways, Children and Youth Agencies, various county, state and federal sources, The Bishop’s Appeal, client fees, agency fundraising events, private contributions, donations, and bequests.