Tahoe Youth & Family expands counseling services
by Sharlene Irete
Tahoe Youth & Family Services was created to serve families through counseling, community outreach, and by providing safe places for youth, an emergency youth shelter and 24-hour crisis line. The nonprofit organization opened a new counseling center at 1422 Mission St. off Highway 395 in Gardnerville.
Tahoe Youth & Family Services began in 1971 in South Lake Tahoe and extended services in Douglas County in 2005. A drop-in resource center opened in the Gardnerville Ranchos in February 2008.
Therapists at the new counseling office are alcohol and drug counseling interns trained in individual and family counseling for substance abuse, conflict resolution, drug and alcohol education. Programs include the adolescent recovery group for on-going support and relapse prevention for youth overcoming substance abuse and addiction.
“The counseling center works with juvenile probation and Douglas County School District to provide drug and alcohol assessment for students who test positive and provide counseling to kids on court orders through juvenile probation,” said Alissa Nourse, Tahoe Youth & Family Services executive director.
The agency received a $250,000 state grant to provide adolescent drug treatment services to the community to help make it better, Nourse said.
“We service 200 youth and their families,” she said. “People can walk in own their own. Self-referrals are fantastic. We’re seeing new clients every day.
“Families are grateful for having services in their community and that we won’t turn them away if they can’t pay. It’s worth it when they seek these services for a better life and it makes you feel good to provide that.”
Hours at the Gardnerville counseling office are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and by appointment. Evening appointments are available.
Go to http://www.tahoeyouth.org to fill out the intake packet questionnaire to provide information used to match issues with counselors.
Another feature of Tahoe Youth & Family Services is the Outreach Program that provides education on teen pregnancy, drugs and alcohol, homelessness and gang involvement.
Project Safe Place gives youth in crisis somewhere to go to access help. There are about 125 safe places in Douglas County and South Lake Tahoe at sites that include fire stations, libraries, fast food restaurants and convenience stores. For information about becoming a safe place, contact Julie Franklin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 782-4202.
The 24-hour crisis line is available to provide crisis intervention and resources for parents as well as youth, and emergency shelter for youth ages 10-18.
The Tahoe Youth & Family Services Drop-In center in the Gardnerville Ranchos is a place for youth to hang out, receive counseling and make connections with caring adults. The drop-in center offers basic necessities for youth, including for runaway and homeless youth ages 11-24. Hours are 2-8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
Tahoe Youth & Family Services seeks donations of office supplies. Contact Alissa Nourse at 782-4202.
Tahoe Youth & Family Services
1422 Mission St., Gardnerville
782-4202 or http://www.tahoeyouth.org
Ranchos Drop In Center
791 Tillman Lane, Unit B, Gardnerville
Tahoe Youth & Family Services
1021 Fremont Ave., South Lake Tahoe, Calif.