Youth Advocates Program

Youth Advocates Program

YAP is a nationally recognized, nonprofit organization exclusively committed to the provision of community-based alternatives to out-of-home care through direct service, advocacy and policy change.

Since our founding in 1975, our expertise and passion have been in serving deep-end, multi-need and cross-system youth and families, though we have success across a continuum of needs and challenges. We provide safe, cost-effective services to youth and families involved in numerous systems, including the Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice, Behavioral Health, Developmental Disabilities, Education and Adult Systems. 

We serve over 20,000 families a year in more than 100 programs across 28 states and the District of Columbia in rural, suburban and urban areas including 25 major metro areas. Since our beginning in 1975, 100% of our programming occurs in the home communities of the people we serve.

What We Believe

We believe the needs of individuals and families- even those with high risk- can safely and most effectively be met within a home and community setting.

We believe that every individual possesses strengths, potential, interests and talents that make them unique and can be built upon and shared.

We believe that everyone needs access to positive people, places and activities within their community to develop their natural potential and live full, productive lives.

We believe that partnering with families to identify their needs and preferences preserves dignity and improves outcomes.

We believe that investing in community-based programming is a cost-effective, responsible alternative to out of home placements.