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Youth Village

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This is Fred Ball for Zions Bank, speaking on business.

Thirty years ago, the late Lila Bjorklund, founded what is now Youth Village, a non-profit organization in Salt Lake that is dedicated to changing the lives of troubled children and families.

Eric Bjorklund, president of Youth Village, tells me Lila's passion to serve others had deep roots. When she was nine, Lila's father was tragically lost in a hunting accident. Profoundly affected by her community's response to her family's loss, Lila experienced the powerful difference one person can make in another's life. It was during this difficult time that Lila's dedication to improve the lives of others was firmly rooted within her.

Her passion, now embodied by Youth Village staff, helps change the lives of 350 children a year, through programs including therapeutic family homes, group homes and Families First.

Gary Crocker, chairman of Youth Village, says that the Village's Perpetual Assistance Fund is aiming to ensure that the Families First program will be available to those in need, regardless of their ability to pay.

Gary tells me the Families First program is vastly successful. Empirical research shows that this treatment, which takes place in the family's home, results in profound and long lasting changes, such as a dramatic decrease in family anger, violence, hostility and disrespect. Over time, the Village believes this and other programs will help reduce the crime rate along the Wasatch Front.

Youth Village is working to double its general donations so it can serve additional families and youth. As Lila would say, "When you help one child, you help generations to come."

For Zions Bank, I'm Fred Ball. I'm speaking on business.

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