Office Youth & Family Services
Office of Youth and Family Services
Please use either 1-800-932-0313, 24 hours per day,
7 days per week to report abuse. For emergency assistance dial 9-1-1.

Lackawanna County Office of Youth and Family Services Will ensure child safety and family stability while respecting the rights and dignity of the family group.

Lackawanna County Office of Youth and Family Services will become an agency that practices research based clinical models of intervention.  The agency will provide a full array of services to ensure safety, permanency and well-being of the county’s children through the engagement and empowerment of families.

Abuse and Neglect Reporting

Professionals who come into contact with children are required to report when they have reasonable cause to suspect that a child under the care, supervision, guidance or training of that person or of their agency, institution or organization is an abused child (see the references in this section for Pennsylvania’s definition of Child Abuse). In addition, any person may report suspected abuse, even if the individual wishes to remain anonymous.

Lackawanna County Office of Youth and Family Services accepts calls from the public and professional sources 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Please be advised that calls received after normal business hours, weekends and holidays will be assessed to determine and assess the safety needs of children only– any other inquiries or requests for service will be logged for a worker to process during normal business hours.

To make a report of abuse or neglect:

Call directly to ChildLine (the State Child Abuse Hotline) at 800-932-0313. Submit a report electronically at

Call Lackawanna County OYFS at 570-963-6781
General inquiries can be sent to our screening unit at the above local number during normal business hours 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday (please note that general requests will only receive responses during normal business hours) or click here to email 24/7.

Foster Parents
The OYFS Foster Care Unit is always looking for quality individuals to provide care for children who cannot safely remain in their homes. The Lackawanna County Office of Youth and Family Services foster care team ensures children identified as unsafe in their own homes, are placed in kinship or foster homes that will meet their individual need for safety, permanence and well-being. Toward that goal, we recruit, evaluate and approve families interested in fostering children. We utilize resources for foster families and children in foster care providing case workers trained in assessing individual needs and offer supports to meet those needs. OYFS works diligently toward the goal of reunification while embracing the importance of maintaining family relationships. While working our primary goal of reunification, we also plan for alternate forms of permanency. Some outcomes could include adoption or subsidized permanent legal custodianship. Subsidized permanent legal custodianship (SPLC) is a form of permanency when reunification with parents or adoption are not options. The custodian is granted the legal right to make decisions and provide consent regarding care, custody and supervision of the child. SPLC can occur without termination of parental rights.

We strive to make the process of becoming a foster family as streamlined as possible and offer online applications for foster families through our partnership with Binti.

For additional information contact Lackawanna County Office of Youth and Family Services at, call 570-963-6781 or visit our website at to discuss your options with a foster care worker.

ARTS ENGAGE!ARTS-Engage-April-8-2013-300x206

ARTS Engage! is a collaboration of community organizations that are funded to run free or low-cost arts and recreation programs open to all residents of Lackawanna County. At-risk children are able to participate in these programs as a way to help develop positive social skills through the power of the arts. To date fourteen organizations have participated in the ARTS Engage! program and over 2,200 children have been served.

ARTS Engage! is a unique prevention program because it is a youth arts program funded jointly through Office of Youth and Family Services and administered through the Department of Arts and Culture in addition to partnerships with the Sherriff’s Office, Family Court, and the Department of Parks and Recreation.   It is a revolutionary way of addressing how the human services can transform their clients’ lives and allows arts organizations, social service agencies and artists to connect and invest in their communities, share resources and ideas, build audiences and reach the underserved.  The total cost to serve over 1000 children is less than it costs to incarcerate one juvenile making this one of the most cost effective diversion programs available.

Because of the popularity of the program, there is currently limited availability. 


Lackawanna County OYFS actively participates in numerous undergraduate and graduate  internship programs through many local universities and colleges.  Some examples include Social Work, Counseling, Public Administration, and Accounting. For information contact Jennifer Wildermann at 570-963-6781 ext. 1121 or email her: Contact Me

Job Opportunities

We continuously strive to employ the best qualified and totally motivated candidates in the agency.  Please note that Lackawanna County Children and Youth Services is a Civil Service agency and can only hire from the appropriate Pennsylvania State Civil Service list.  While a high score does not guarantee employment, it will likely result in an interview for which the results will determine the appropriateness of employment with our agency.  Please ensure that when you take your test that you check Lackawanna County as a preferred site, otherwise you will not show up on our list.  To schedule a test or view eligibility requirements please visit The Pennsylvania State Civil Service

Commission’s website:

Governor's Office of Administration (OA) Civil Service For further assistance please contact Pat O’Neill at 963-6781 ext. 1112.

Administrative Contacts

Kerry Browning, Deputy Director
Phone: 570-963-6781
EmailContact Me

  • Child Abuse Definition
  • Notice of Nondiscrimination Policy