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What is Shelter Care?

Shelter care provides temporary and emergency care for alleged and adjudicated dependent and delinquent juveniles. The Shelter helps children and their families by providing professional therapeutic and supportive services that will enable them to achieve their full potential. Our hope is to touch the lives of the children we serve so that they become productive members of society, in part because of the caring, nurturing, and learning atmosphere of the Shelter.


The Shelter serves males and females between the ages of ten and eighteen years of age that are awaiting court review. The Children & Youth Agency  or Juvenile Probation & Parole Office refers these residents to us. Shelter care offers a supervised setting with accommodations to house twenty-four residents each with their own sleeping quarters. The resident participate in activities that help them grow emotionally, physically, and intellectually.


The versatility of the Shelter’s behavior modification system allows home visits, if the resident has achieved a high status and if the referring agency approves the visit. These visits are beneficial when possibility of family reunification exists.


The ability to venture “off grounds”, with staff supervision, enables shelter residents to experience a variety of recreational activities as well as participate in volunteer activities throughout Lancaster County communities. The facet of the programming also affords the opportunity for educational field trips and experiential learning.


What is a Dependent Child?


According to the Juvenile Act, composed by the Juvenile Court Judges’ Commission (JCJC), a dependent child is a child who:

  1. is without proper parental care or control, subsistence, education as required by law, or other care or control necessary for his physical, mental, or emotional health, or morals;

  2. has been placed for care or adoption in violation of law;

  3. has been abandoned by his parents, guardian, or other custodian;

  4. is without parent, guardian, or legal guardian;

  5. while subject to compulsory school attendance is habitually and without justification truant from school;

  6. has committed a specific act or acts of habitual disobedience of the reasonable and lawful commands of his parent, guardian, or other custodian and who is ungovernable and found to be in need of care, treatment, or supervision;

  7. is under the age of ten years and has committed a delinquent act;

  8. has been formally adjudicated dependant, and is under the jurisdiction of the court, subject to its conditions or placements and who commits an act which is defined as ungovernable as in #6;

  9. has been referred pursuant to section 6323 of the Juvenile Act (relating to informal adjustment) and who commits an act which is defined ungovernable as in #6.

Copyright 2016 - County of Lancaster, PA -- LCYIC, Drew Fredericks