The Center for Family Outreach was founded in late 2000 by Laurie Klith, who has served as the Executive Director since its inception. Working in partnership with the Poudre and Thompson School Districts, the Department of Human Services, the juvenile system and non-profit agencies in Larimer County, Laurie identified a gap in services to help youth and families navigate the judicial systems.
Families needed help negotiating cross-systems collaborations, and this required someone with experience within the juvenile and community systems. Laurie also recognized the need to unite the family voice within the adolescent substance abuse, mental health and juvenile justice systems and to link it with other family voices across child-serving systems.
The Center was created with one broad objective: to develop programs and foster support systems for young people and their families who face the challenges of drug and alcohol use, anger management issues, poor life skills and at-risk behaviors. Programs at The Center are unique, strength-based initiatives that build on abilities and attributes already exhibited by youth and their families. Gender-specific classes at The Center focus on developing strong techniques for sound decision making that will help both young men and young women make the best of their particular environment. Youth build positive connections, competence, and coping skills.
At the Center we understand that when families are engaged and equipped to take responsibility, then greater inter-agency communication and community collaboration takes place. The quality of treatment increases and the outcomes for families improve. Laurie's continued vision is offering education and prevention programs to youth and families in Larimer County. Together, we as a community make a difference in the lives of youth and families.
"Laurie has been involved in the criminal justice system for the last 31 years and brings a wealth of experience in her role as an advocate for youth and families, developing community partnerships and programs. Laurie has been a community builder, leader and youth advocate for more than 30 years. She has the energy, the networks and the commitment to make a real difference in strengthening families in northern Colorado." -- Don Unger, PhD, Retired Superintendent of Schools.