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From the Heart of the President

What an incredible summer! We were thrilled to have both campuses filled with kids. My wife and I were blessed to see both our sons choose to serve at Youth Haven this summer. Our oldest son and his new wife spent their summer at our Arizona campus, while our youngest son served as a team leader in Michigan.

At the end of each week, I listened to him describe some of the situations he had encountered with the kids. One boy ate so fast he choked a couple of times, simply because he wasn’t used to having enough to eat. My son had to assure him the food wasn’t going anywhere and he would not be asked to leave the table hungry. Several kids came with just one or two clothing items for the week, and we were able to give them what they needed. What seemed to impact my son the most was that so many of the kids had no positive role models in their lives and were just so thankful for the attention our staff gave them.

Kids are desperate for adults to give them a little bit of time and understanding. I heard the compassion in my son’s voice as he talked about one-on-one moments with kids who told him about home situations where they don’t feel like anyone loves or cares about them. But I also saw his excitement each time he was able to share Christ and help a child make a decision to follow Him.

That’s what makes Youth Haven so unique. Every one of our team leaders could share similar stories. The kids we serve are dealing with struggles we can’t even imagine. God has called us to love them, meet their needs, have fun with them, and give them the hope that comes from knowing He is right there with them in the middle of whatever they’re going through.

And summer is only one season of our year-round mission! This fall, we’re excited to reach out to hundreds more disadvantaged children through our on-site and off-site programs. They will experience the love and hope of Christ because friends like you care. Thank you for giving them that opportunity!

Your Mission Partner,

Lars Carlson

President & CEO

*name changed for confidentiality

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