Youth Intervention Center

Mission Statement

The mission of the Youth Intervention Center is to provide a safe environment to ensure the essential physical, mental, and emotional well-being for the youth we serve through positive and compassionate engagement.

Core Values 

The Youth Intervention Center believes in:

  • Diversity and Teamwork – We embrace our varied perspectives and talents in order to adapt to the needs of the youth we serve.
  • Integrity – We strive to meet high ethical and professional standards of Juvenile Justice.
  • Commitment – We pursue our mission and goals with tenacity and resolve.
  • Safety – We are committed to the health and safety of our clients and workforce.
  • Respect – We believe respect and fair treatment are fundamental to our service, operations, and decision-making.
  • Compassion – We believe in fostering positive relationships in order to encourage personal growth.

Operational Goals 

In order to advance our mission, our Detention Program strives to:

  • Provide a safe, secure, and structured environment for the juveniles we serve, while at the same time providing protection for the community.
  • Serve as role models and project an appearance, attitude, and behavior which creates an atmosphere conducive to positive change, dignity, and respect for all, while at the same time authentically connecting and communicating with our residents.
  • Provide programming that stimulates the residents’ physical, mental, educational, and creative growth, with a focus on family and community engagement.

In order to advance our mission, the Shelter Program strives to:

  • Provide a safe, temporary residential care environment for “at-risk” youth while awaiting transition to placement or home reunification.
  • Connect with residents in an honest and authentic manner, modeling dignity and respect for all.
  • Create opportunities for change, emphasizing personal growth and accountability, while working with the youth, their families, contracting agencies and the community.
  • Provide programming that stimulates the physical, mental, educational, and creative growth and interests of our residents.

In order to advance our mission, the P.U.L.S.E. Weekend Program and Evening Treatment Center strives to:

  • Create a safe environment of support, positivity and mutual respect that promotes personal growth.
  • Work collaboratively with the Office of Juvenile Probation, the Children and Youth Agency, and the participant’s family to identify each participant’s needs, strengths, and goals.
  • Utilize evidence-based practices in order to foster competency development and self-reflection.
  • Equip participants with new tools for managing life’s challenges, increasing a positive outlook on their future, and building confidence in their own ability to be successful.
  • Elicit internal motivation within our participants to create positive change within themselves.


 The Youth Intervention Center opened its doors on March 9, 2002 and is located on the Sunnyside Peninsula at 235 Circle Avenue in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The Center provides detention, shelter care services, and alternative treatment programs for males and females from the ages of 10 to 18. The Detention program has a 48 bed capacity, the Shelter program has a 36 bed capacity, and P.U.L.S.E. Weekend Program has a 12 bed capacity.

 The Youth Intervention Center’s Detention program provides temporary custody for alleged and adjudicated male and female residents from the ages of 10 to 18.  The mission of juvenile detention is the temporary and safe custody of juveniles who are accused of conduct subject to the jurisdiction of the court who require a restricted environment for their own, or the community’s protection, while pending legal action. The facility's Shelter care program provides temporary and emergency care for alleged and adjudicated dependent and less at risk delinquent male and female residents from the ages of 10 to 18.

  The P.U.L.S.E. (Providing Uplifting Learning Skills to Excel) Evening Treatment Center (ETC) serves adolescents who are involved with the Office of Juvenile Probation or the Children and Youth Agency. The program is offered to males and females ages 13-18. Participants can be referred to the program in three ways: recommended by a Juvenile Probation Officer while the youth is awaiting adjudication/disposition, court-ordered by Juvenile Probation after disposition or recommended by a Children and Youth Caseworker. Participants will be transported to the program after school and then transported home at 8:30pm as long as they live within a 12 mile radius of the facility. The length of the program will be determined by the participant’s treatment needs. The participant’s goals, program length, and groups will be determined based on recommendations from the Juvenile Probation Officer or Children and Youth Caseworker, consultation with the parents/guardians, and results of various assessments. The ETC participants will participate in evidence based programs, as well as psycho-educational groups. The following evidence based programs will be offered: Aggression Replacement Training, Thinking for a Change, Strengthening Families, and Alternatives. In addition, participants will be able to participate in the following psycho-educational groups: Employment Skills Development, Life Skills Development, Coping Strategies, Relationship Skills, and Therapeutic Group Discussion.

Licensing & Qualifications

The Youth Intervention Center is licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services and abides by their regulations. The center is also a member of the Pennsylvania Partnership for Juvenile Services (PPJS) and the National Partnership for Juvenile Services (NPJS).

The director of the Youth Intervention Center is appointed by the Lancaster County Board of Commissioners.

Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA)


In order to demonstrate compliance with PREA, juvenile facilities such as the Youth Intervention Center must be audited every three years. The Lancaster County Youth Intervention Center completed our third PREA audit on October 22, 2019 which we were found to be in full compliance with the Act.  Forty-one standards which are measured during this audit.  The Youth Intervention Center met all these standards and exceeded expectations in many of those, specifically related to the resident education, documentation, reporting, access to services, resident files, and employee personnel and training files.

The facility's next PREA audit will occur in the Fall of 2022.

You can review the auditor's final reports here