Hillcrest Washington Youth Home, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization that offers unique and innovative programs to support the positive development of children in our communities. Emergency shelter and residential services are available to children and adolescents, ages 10 through 21 years of age, who need out of home placement.

Board of Directors
Chairman: Barbara Ferguson
Vice Chairman: Bruceann King
Treasurer: Bernie Faraone
Secretary: Brenda Schaefer

Donald Ramsden
Jarrod Luigs
Marie Opatrny Pease
Sheila Huff
Shirley Oulaw

In 1871, a private residence built in 1849, was deeded to Vanderburgh County to use as an orphanage. This facility was named Hillcrest.

In 1952, Vanderburgh County constructed the new Hillcrest and Washington buildings to be used as residential care facilities for youth and operated by the Vanderburgh County Department of Public Welfare.

In 1986, a change in Indiana law required that all county welfare departments become part of the State Welfare Department. The State Welfare Department did not operate facilities, so the Vanderburgh County Commissioners put out a request to the community for agencies interested in operating the Hillcrest and Washington facilities.

Organized in 1984, Hillcrest and Southwestern Indiana Mental Health Foundation, Inc.,(Foundation) presented a proposal to the county commissioners and was chosen to manage the facilities. In June 1987, the Foundation officially began operating the facilities.

The Hillcrest facility began operating as a residential and emergency shelter facility for all children and became, what is known today, as Hillcrest Washington Youth Home, Inc. Over the years, the Washington Building served as a facility for the Christa McAuliffe Alternative Middle School, the Learning Center and the office of the Child Sexual Abuse Agency Coordination Task Force. Today, the Washington facility houses Southwestern Behavioral Healthcare’s partial hospitalization program for children.

Through the years, major renovations to both facilities have been made to provide a safe and comfortable setting for children. Thanks to continued support from our community, Hillcrest is able to provide needed services for children to enhance their quality of life and to provide them with opportunities to develop skills that will stay with them throughout their lives.

IYSA Funding
Hillcrest Washington Youth Home, Inc. is a member of Indiana Youth Service Association (IYSA) and receives funding for our Safe Place, SATI, TIPS and RAAP programs.

IYSA membership is comprised of Youth Service Bureaus (YSB) that deliver community-based juvenile delinquency and family support programming. IYSA’s current 32 members serve approximately 74 Hoosier counties.

Youth Service Bureaus serve vulnerable youth and families and offer programming that supports positive youth development. YSB programming is defined in Indiana state statue and includes four core roles:

  • Juvenile Delinquency Prevention
  • Information and Referral Services
  • Community Education
  • Advocacy for Youth
Hillcrest is licensed by the Indiana Department of Child Services as a Child Caring Institution and an Emergency Shelter.

Hillcrest is licensed to provide children with long-term residential care, emergency shelter and foster care services.

Mission, Vision and Core Values
Our Mission

The mission of Hillcrest Washington Youth Home, Inc., which includes Youth Service Bureau, is to provide quality innovative services to our region’s youth and families.

Our Vision 
Children should have the opportunity to “inherit tomorrow” by developing the skills necessary to function in a family environment and independently in the community.

Our Core Values

  • Children are our top priority.
  • Children deserve the opportunity to develop life skills in a safe, therapeutic environment within their home community.
  • Children are responsible for their own behavior.
  • We will advocate for children in all aspects of their lives.
  • We will partner with others to provide optimal services to children.
  • We will always look for ways to improve our services to children and their families.
  • We, at Hillcrest can provide no greater service than to be appropriate role models for the children we serve.
Orth Trust
In 1993 Hillcrest Washington Youth Home was left an endowment from Alfred E. Orth. Judge Lensing created a court order to oversee the funds and the administration of those funds to ensure that the intent of the endowment was upheld.

Per the court order, the primary purpose of the trust “is to provide a benefit to the children who are or have been residents of the Hillcrest Washington Youth Home. This purpose shall be fulfilled by providing an opportunity for education and training that might not otherwise be available to them.”

All current or past residents of Hillcrest Washington Youth Home are eligible to receive funding for educational purposes; having to have stayed at least one (1) overnight.

The applicant should complete the appropriate application and submit the completed document along with a copy of a photo ID and Social Security card to the Executive Director for processing. The Advisory Committee will meet and make an appropriate decision regarding the request made by the applicant.

Alexis Maggard, BS
Community Resource Specialist

Bill Kirk, BS
Residential Services Director

Gary Barnett, MA
Senior Community Resource Specialist

Executive Director

Laura Walker, LCSW, LCAC
Residential Therapist

Sherri Brown, RN