BY JUDY PARNES
Special for the Clarkston News
In 2021, Clarkston Area Youth Assistance (CAYA) celebrated 60 years of delivering services and programs focused exclusively on children, youth and families in the community of Clarkston.
CAYA is a non-profit, community-based organization dedicated to strengthening youth and families through community participation and is committed to the long-term growth and development of all children and youth in the Clarkston area. through prevention, support, community education and celebration.
The strength of a long-term commitment
Since 1961, the “Angel CAYA” has been the pattern that describes the unique local structure of CAYA. There are five permanent local sponsors: Clarkston Community Schools, Independence Township, Springfield Township, City of the Village of Clarkston and Oakland County Circuit Court-Family Division which is the original permanent sponsor, providing a full-time social worker, through through Oakland County Youth. Assistance which supervises the 26 local youth assistance offices.
The “CAYA Angel” includes CAYA programs and services, all of which promote the growth, development, health and well-being of children, youth and families.
All CAYA leads with our hearts
Social support services include short-term, confidential services that focus on strengthening youth and families, meeting their unique needs while aiming to prevent future problems. CAYA programs are implemented with volunteers:
– Family education – Workshops for parents and / or young people
– Homework club – After-school tutoring program for students in grades 3 to 5 in a family setting
– Camp scholarships – Day camp or night camp for families eligible for income
– Skills-building scholarships – For learning, music, art, sports, etc., for qualifying income families
– Mentors Plus – A mentor is paired with a child or youth, meeting once a week for a year
– Youth Recognition – Honors and celebrates children and young people for their work on well-being
– Pinwheel for Prevention – National and local campaign to prevent and mitigate adversity, by developing the well-being of the community where everyone flourishes.
Join our hands together
ACYA is grateful for the support and generosity of businesses, residents, faith community, Clarkston Area Optimists, Clarkston Coalition of Youth, Clarkston Rotary Club, Clarkston Women’s Club, Clarkston Independence District Library, Bridgewater Park Apartments, The Clarkston News, Easterseals. Michigan, Oakland County CARE House, Clarkston Area Chamber of Commerce, Clarkston Community Schools Trustees and Staff, David W. Elliott Memorial Foundation and Secret Admirers.
For more information, call the CAYA office at 248-623-4313 and leave a message to Jan Scislowicz, Judy Parnes or Lauren Klos.
TOP PHOTO: The latest CAYA youth recognition ceremony and in-person dessert reception took place in 2019, honoring and celebrating students for their contribution to the well-being of their class, school and / or community . Photos provided