In this issue: Staff celebrate at YINFest; Landlord Engagement program seeks additional landlord partners; and Youth In Need welcomes new Board members.

YINFest Celebrates Staff, Recognizes Service Anniversaries

Youth In Need held YINFest, its annual staff appreciation event, last week at the Rec Hall, where hundreds of staff from all of our locations—including our new friends from University City Children’s Center and LUME Institute—gathered to relax, play games, eat, visit and celebrate all that it means to be a YINner. Among the celebrations were 35 service anniversary awards, which recognized a collective 400 years of service to Youth In Need!

Staff also celebrated two Employee of the Year award winners! Each year, Youth In Need’s Board of Regents, a dedicated group of “retired” Board members, select the winners from staff nominations. This year, there were 31 nominations! The Board of Regents selected April Klutenkamper, Marketing Director, as the Management Employee of the Year. April has been at Youth In Need for 19 years! Her nominator said you can see her impact everywhere at Youth In Need, from the agency’s website to promotional materials to media coverage. Whether April is taking the lead in launching Youth In Need’s 50th anniversary PR efforts, promoting the REDI commitment, creating Newsfeed at Youth In Need and the annual Impact Report, or designing all of the marketing materials for agency events, April does what she does very well, always with a personal touch and customer focus, to keep everyone informed and excited about Youth In Need’s mission. Congratulations, April!

The Board of Regents selected Latroyia Rogers, Receptionist at Wentzville Early Learning Program, as the Direct Service Employee of the Year. They received four nominations for Latroyia, underscoring what an impact she’s made on the people she works with every day. Latroyia has worked for Youth In Need for 17 years, and in that time, she’s become known for exemplifying they agency’s core values and for making everyone feel welcome and included. Not only is she friendly, kind, supportive and easy to talk to, but she’s also very organized and willing to do anything that’s needed. She even came to the aid of a parent who suddenly lost consciousness in the lobby! Latroyia has held many roles over the years, and she’s even enlisted her own children to join Youth In Need’s Early Learning Programs staff, keeping this dedication all in the family. Congratulations, Latroyia!

Landlord Engagement Seeks Additional Apartments

Since it began in April 2023, Youth In Need’s Landlord Engagement program has housed 100 youth, ages 18 to 24, in partner apartments throughout St. Louis City and County and St. Charles, Lincoln, Warren and Montgomery Counties! The program is seeking additional landlord partners with one- and two-bedroom units in St. Charles County who would want to partner with a social service agency that provides housing assistance. The Landlord Engagement program offers continuous support to landlords and clients working in partnership with the program, which includes signing bonuses for landlords and deposit assistance for clients. Other benefits for landlords include the promotion of open units to ensure quicker rentals. If you are a landlord or know one who would be interested in connecting, contact Hannah Policy, Youth In Need’s Landlord Engagement Manager.

Youth In Need Welcomes New Board Members

Youth In Need has added seven new members to its Board of Directors. Welcome!

  • Dr. Tiffany Besse is the Deputy Superintendent of the Parkway School District.
  • Nyron Edwards is a retired education administrator.
  • John McGuire is a retired hospital administrator.
  • Nicole McPherson is the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging at BJC HealthCare.
  • Cori Trautvetter is a Partner at Mercer.
  • Laura Wilhelm is the Owner of Wilhelm Strategy & Solutions.
  • Senator Brian Williams is a Missouri State Senator with the 14 Senatorial District in St. Louis County.