Major renovations in store for New Haven Youth & Family Services

REGION — On deck is $1 million in renovations, but first comes the fundraising.

On Oct. 18, Vista-based New Haven Youth & Family Services will be hosting its annual fundraiser at Coyote Bar & Grill in Carlsbad.

Chris Kates, community relations director for New Haven, said the private school is aiming to raise $200,000.

He said live and silent auctions will highlight the event in addition to live music from the band Daring Greatly. Advance tickets are $120 and $135 at the door and the event runs from 6 to 9 p.m.

“We are preparing for a major renovation, so this year the fundraiser will be highlighting that,” Kates explained. “Our production is not consistent with our presentation. We want to maximize our 3.5 acres.”

The school, which receives public funds but is private and helps young boys, who need extra support to meet social, academic and emotional needs with an education focus on computer science, vocation, culinary arts and construction through project-based learning.

In the addition, the school, which celebrates its 50th anniversary next year, has been transforming lives for at-risk youth through an innovative and comprehensive therapeutic education model.

“When they come to us, they have a lot of needs,” Kates added. “Most of them come to us from the schools, but other through the county or adoption services.”

It includes social, emotional and behavioral intervention, career technical education and life skills development with a targeted academic curriculum. With the goal of equipping the boys with the tools to become self-confident, independent and ultimately hopeful about their future success and personal fulfillment.

“Overall, it’s a therapeutic environment with about 30 students,” Kates said. “It’s also a residential treatment center, where most of our kids are living here, so we are providing 24-hour and training so they can go back to their communities.”

As for the fundraiser, Kates said all the money generated will go to renovations and programming to keep the school up to date.

One student, 17-year-old Scott Kawai, said the school has been a great place for him to learn and get back on track. His focus is on woodworking and has even landed a part-time job thanks to his classes.

He said his academic work has been easy as he has related to his studies and gained employment.

“School is going good and it’s a really good experience,’ Kawai added.

Kates, meanwhile, said fundraising is necessary as the school is only budgeted a limited amount of public funds.

If New Haven reaches its goal of $200,000, half is earmarked for programs, while the remaining $100,000 will be directed to renovations. Kates said the school has 12 projects included in the $1 million effort.

For more about New Haven or the fundraiser, visit


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