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Our History


In 1969, more than 40 years ago, a small group of local citizens, under the leadership of Carol Schmidt, sponsored the legislation that created the Worcester Juvenile Court. A year later, this tireless group incorporated Youth Opportunities Upheld, Inc. (Y.O.U., Inc.) as an arm of this court. “Intensive Juvenile Probation” was the first program offered by Y.O.U., Inc. With a budget of approximately $40,000 and a staff of three, this program successfully redirected many of the 24 youthful offenders it served that year into contributing members of our community.

Every year since, Y.O.U., Inc. has grown in direct response to the continuously changing needs of our community. From “deinstitutionalization” and “privatization” movements, to changes in local, state, and national trends, to ever-changing needs of children and families, Y.O.U., Inc. has created a record of well-managed, quality programs with very high success rates. Y.O.U., Inc. was, and still is well positioned to expand its services to meet future challenges.

Today, Y.O.U., Inc. is one of the leading child welfare, behavioral health and education agencies in Massachusetts. Our organization offers these specialized services at 32 different sites in Worcester County with a comprehensive array of educational, vocational, therapeutic, and residential programs that serve more than 13,000 young people and their families each year. Currently, Y.O.U., Inc. has a budget in excess of $30 million and a staff of more than 600 employees.