Maui Youth & Family Services
Maui Youth and Family Services has been empowering youth and families challenged with behavioral health issues to become responsible, self-fulfilled and contributing members of the community since 1978. In 2020, the organization was awarded the Mayor’s Small Business Award for Outstanding Non-Profit Business.
Originally established by Maui County as the Maunaolu Youth Residential Shelter to provide a safe place for Maui’s homeless, abused and runaway children, we have since expanded and now include a range of behavioral and mental health programs to support young people and their families’ personal growth and emotional stability.
Whether young people have mental health needs and/or are experiencing difficulties socially, behaviorally and/or academically – we are here to help. Whenever possible and appropriate, we also work with young people’s relatives to create lasting and positive change for the entire family unit. Often the youth we work with are unsheltered, at risk of becoming unsheltered, in foster care, have aged out of foster care, or are not able to receive care in their own home. We help them achieve stability and growth in a caring atmosphere where they can receive parental supervision, guidance and support.
Residential Services for Youth
A variety of programs that provide youth with stability and security as they navigate challenges. Programs include emergency 24-hour care, foster care for at-risk youth, and independent and transitional living programs for former foster youth.
To access the 24-Hour Emergency Shelter Hotline, call Maui Youth and Family Services at 808-579-8406. Or email us at Services@MYFS.org.
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Prevention & Support Services for Youth
Prevention Services – Project Venture
School workshops and after-school activities for youth in grades 6-8 that give young people a chance to develop peer support from friendships made in a positive environment. This helps them stay on track and reduces the likelihood that they will later engage in dangerous and unhealthy activities. Examples of after-school activities are journal-writing, beach clean-ups, community-service projects and trips to museums, the aquarium, zip lining, and stand-up paddling.
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Support, Outreach and Advocacy
MYFS has numerous counselors who support youth with an array of challenges. This can include challenges with grades and attendance at school; homelessness and/or lack of safe shelter; youth in need of independent living skills; assistance with school or job skills. Counselors provide care coordination and warm linkages to professional assistance. For more information, email us at Services@MYFS.org.
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Substance Use Disorder Services for Youth
Our programs provide confidential treatment for 12-17 year-olds that includes individual and/or family counseling, group therapy and education about addiction. Transportation can be provided. Services are available at the following locations:
MYFS Makawao Campus
Baldwin High School
Lahainaluna High School
Kalama Intermediate School
‘Iao Intermediate School
Lokelani Intermediate School
Maui High School
Kihei Charter School
For more information, email us at Services@MYFS.org.
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Many of our young clients have walked a hard road before reaching our program doors. Here they share their personal stories.
"Before treatment, I thought that I would magically become sober. I realized that you have to put in the effort and be motivated. No matter how many times I relapsed I wanted to be sober again. I feel better that I learned how drugs affect my body. The knowledge helped me quit. I received the support from the staff. My hope for the future is that my family can learn how to support me."
"It's a good thing that I've been sober for a month since I started treatment. I thought I was going to struggle staying clean but I actually made it. The most important thing I learned about myself is believing in myself. If you believe in yourself you can do better; meaning, you can quit. My hope for the future is that I can spend more time with my siblings and get better grades in school."
"Before entering the program, I gave people attitude and I was always tired. I used to feel stuck and bored. I feel like coming to the program was a good thing. I might have started drinking and using again if I didn't join group. My thinking has been more positive and I can have fun without using. I can see clearly now. The most important thing I learned was the facts about drugs and alcohol. The most important thing I learned about myself is that I can get off drugs It takes time and you just got to believe in yourself. My hope for the future is that I can gain trust back from my family and have a good life."
Michele Maalea, BSCJA, CSAC, DOT-SAP
Program Director, Maui Youth & Family Services
Born in California, Michele moved to Maui in 1982 to connect with her paternal family. Her education includes an Associate Degree in Human Services with a concentration in Substance Use Disorders from UHMC and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration with a concentration in Human Services from UOP. Michele became a Hawaii Certified Substance Abuse Counselor in 2010 and has enjoyed working in various treatment levels of care. Her range of experience includes working with Substance Use Disorders, Judiciary, homeless/at risk individuals, co-occurring disorders, gender-specific, and community health care. She is an active member of NAADAC, CCAPP, BHAP and the National Society of Leadership and Success.
As a mother of five and grandmother of five Michele has a passion and devotion to the wellness of the youth in Maui County.
Clinicians and Support Staff
The Maui Youth & Family Services staff includes a highly talented group of caring individuals. The team is comprised of administrative staff, prevention staff, certified substance abuse counselors, Master’s level social workers, art therapists and outreach workers. All program staff are trained in Trauma Informed methods of service delivery and are CPR and First Aid certified. They are required to regularly maintain their training for their respective certifications and licenses.
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Your Generosity Helps Save Lives
Maui Youth & Family Services is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and your donation is tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. The Tax ID # for MYFS is 99-0221127.
At Maui Youth & Family Services we have implementing the following policies and procedures to address the COVID-19 pandemic. This update is in effect until further notice.
Precautions for New Clients
We have implemented additional screening precautions for new clients. Anyone with specific risk factors or displaying symptoms of COVID-19 will not be allowed to participate in programs. A negative COVID-19 test is required for admission to our homes.
Visitors are allowed on campus by appointment only.
Precautions for Residents and Staff
Staff members remain dedicated to serving our clients and are using the CDC recommended health and safety precautions around sanitation and prevention of disease spread.
External group activities for youth are being conducted in person based on County, State and CDC recommendations for safety.
COVID-19 can cause potential hazards for those with drug use/abuse disorders, and be difficult for those with behavioral health issues.
Thank you for your support and understanding during this difficult time.
Maui Youth & Family Services provides youth with opportunities to succeed within a safe and supportive environment. Our prevention programs help young people form strong social bonds and family foundations so they can make the right decisions regarding drugs, alcohol and other “high-risk” activities when they face peer pressure in high school. Our intervention programs help youth in situations beyond their control, whether because they are using/abusing drugs and/or alcohol, are homeless, in foster care or aging out of foster care, etc. By stepping in and providing the right guidance and programs on an individualized basis, we can ensure that these young people do not slip through the cracks. MYFS’ broad spectrum of services embraces young people and families in the community and addresses all types of needs related to physical safety, personal growth and mental and emotional stability. MYFS works with several organizations and programs in Maui County and the State of Hawaii, such as Parents and Children Together (PACT), the Judiciary, public schools, Friends of the Children’s Justice Center, Maui Homeless Alliance, the POI (Positive Outreach Intervention) Project and more.
Maui Youth & Family Services merged with Maui nonprofits Aloha House and Malama Family Recovery Center to become part of the Maui Behavioral Health Resources umbrella organization in 2008. As a major community resource for intervention and rehabilitation for our youth and families in need, MYFS is known in the community for its professionalism and effectiveness.
Maui Youth & Family Services accepts most insurance plans. For those without insurance or unable to pay for services (or for programs that are free to participants), we are proudly funded by the following:
- Hawaii Department of Education
- Hawaii Department of Health
- Hawaii Department of Human Services – Office of Youth Services
- Hawaii State Judiciary
- Hawaii Youth Services Network
- Maui County
- Maui United Way
- Private Foundations and Charities
- Corporate Donors
- Individual Donors