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WHAT WE DO Mission YESS changes lives by protecting children and empowering families.

Vision YESS is a leader and partner in building an Iowa where all children thrive in a safe home.

Values Compassion • Safety • Teamwork • Trust

YEAR AT A GLANCE We want to build an Iowa where all children thrive in a safe home. Over the last year, Team YESS worked to achieve this by meeting clients where they're at and providing the support they need. Sometimes that support was a stay in shelter. Other times, it was simply a person to talk to or offering help with everyday tasks. We strive to provide the best care possible, and we're proud of what we achieved over the last year.  As we look to the future and our 45th year of keeping kids safe, we are pleased to share that we have an updated mission statement. While the words have changed, the work remains the same. Team YESS will continue protecting children, empowering families, and changing lives so all kids can have healthy and happy childhoods. 

18,979 nights of shelter care




art & music therapy sessions

nutritious meals provided

crisis line calls

826 families enrolled in ICC program


outpatient counseling sessions

822 shelter admissions

COMMUNITY NEED Childhood trauma in our community is tragically common. The demand for shelter beds remains high. Youth in shelter are requiring longer and longer stays. Every day, children and families turn to YESS for safety, care, and hope for a better tomorrow. Kids in our care last year experienced: 75% affected by divorce or separation 40% were emotionally abused 39% lived with an adult dependent on illicit drugs 30% experienced physical abuse 29% lived in a home with domestic violence

35 Iowa counties servedÂ

92% increaseÂ

Shelter requests for children removed from their parent's care

2,474 calls to request a shelter bed, safety planning, or other resources during times of crisis

1,828Â Total requests for a shelter bed


PROTECTING CHILDREN Brandon, 13, was brought to YESS by a school counselor. When he arrived in our Access Center, he had been on the run for three days. He disclosed to his school counselor that he was afraid to go home because his father would often hurt him. Brandon stayed in YESS' Emergency Shelter for two months.   While he had experienced a lot of trauma during his short life and still struggled to process it all, he saw great progress during his time in shelter. He built relationships with volunteers and staff members who helped him learn to trust adults. He opened up to his therapist about his anxiety and fear. Most of all, Brandon enjoyed working with YESS’ Artist-in-Residence to create works of art that helped him process his emotions. During these sessions, he could create, explore, and make a mess without fear of repercussions. His confidence started to grow and he almost always left the art studio with a smile on his face. Brandon was initially placed in a foster home but now lives with a family member in another state. He is doing well in his new home and writes letters to YESS staff to update them on his progress.

Name and identifying characteristics changed to protect children. Pictured youth are not YESS clients.

EMPOWERING FAMILIES Molly is a 10-year-old girl who loves crafts, butterflies, and spending time with her cousins. She wants to be a teacher when she grows up. But Molly also deals with big feelings that can be hard to handle. Sometimes she can become depressed and hopeless. To help Molly and her family cope with these big feelings, she is enrolled in YESS’ Integrated Care Connections program as well as therapy and Behavioral Health Intervention Services through YESS Hope Hall. Recently, Molly's dad discovered she had made a plan to end her life. He turned to YESS for help. Molly's ICC Care Coordinator recommended a hospital that could provide immediate help, as well as some next steps in her therapy and BHIS services. Because Molly was enrolled in multiple YESS programs, it was easy for her Care Coordinator to work with the entire team at YESS to make a plan that would best support Molly and her dad. This integrated approach allowed Molly's dad to focus on what is most important - Molly. Molly didn't go through with her plan to end her life. With the support of her dad and YESS staff, she created a safety plan for when her big feelings surface. She knows where to find support, as does her dad.   Name and identifying characteristics changed to protect child. Those pictured are not YESS clients.

CHANGING LIVES Mara, 14, arrived at YESS’ Emergency Shelter with her brother Ben, 4, after they were removed from their parents’  home due to neglect and emotional abuse. Mara loves horses and painting her nails just like many girls her age, but she struggles with some everyday tasks due to an intellectual disability. She also has behavioral and mental health  problems and finds it hard to express herself appropriately. In the    past three years, Mara has lived in 10 different placements, including previous shelter stays at YESS. Mara and Ben found a safe place to stay together at YESS while next steps were determined. Mara often visited Ben in the Crisis Nursery, and they loved participating in music therapy groups together. After four weeks, a foster home was identified for Mara and Ben. YESS supported them in the transition to their new home; Mara was enrolled in YESS' Integrated Care Connections program to assist with medicine management as well as in-home skill building from YESS Hope Hall to help her better express herself. Mara and Ben found a special home with their foster family and were recently adopted. The family continues to utilize the resources put in place to help them both thrive in a safe and happy home.   Name and identifying characteristics changed to protect children. Pictured youth are not YESS clients.

OUTCOMES Outcomes for Shelter Youth


total lives impacted through residential and community-based programming


children diverted from a higher level of care


discharged to a permanent home


maintained or improved overall functioning during shelter stay

Addressing the symptoms of trauma When a child's story involves pain, uncertainty, or trauma, it affects how they experience the world. It can cause them to distrust others and experience symptoms like stomachaches, an inability to sleep, or a desire to hurt themselves. The team at YESS works to reduce these symptoms and improve children's day-to-day lives.




of outpatient counseling clients

of children in shelter

of BHIS clients

Reported a decrease in trauma symptoms

It meant a lot to me when I stayed at YESS. I was in a bad spot and I needed somewhere to go for a while. YESS really helped. - Former shelter youth

COMMUNITY SUPPORT Funding (By Source) 30%

24% 24%


Service Fees

30% Community



in-kind donations to support shelter and community clients


Operating Expenses

Government Contracts



Integrated Care Connections

8% Hope Hall Counseling

Management & General



17% 8%



volunteer hours to help children in our community

17% 17%


Emergency Shelter & Crisis Nursery

$350,000+ Raised through the YESS Duck Derby and Human Foosball League

14,022 Individuals who learned about YESS through presentations and tours



BOARD OF DIRECTORS Jim McCulloh, President* Travis Etchison, Vice President* Shane Zimmerman, Treasurer* Jason Madden, Secretary* Derek Stocking, Immediate Past President* Peggy Strief, At-Large Member* Don Blumenthal J. Scott Johnson Jay Larsen Libby Nelson Cy Phillips Joe Price Paul Schlueter Asst. Chief Allan Tunks Karen Worth *Executive Committee Member

JOIN TEAM YESS Visit to learn more about volunteer opportunities, donation needs, and other ways you can help YESS protect children and empower families. | 515.282.9377 | 918 SE 11th St, Des Moines, IA 50309

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YESS Impact Report 2017-2018  

YESS Impact Report 2017-2018  

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