Contect with Us:  Facebook | LinkedIn | YouTube

A Message from our CEO

At Directions for Youth & Families we are proud to be named as one of the 2016 Top 50 NonProfits to Work For as recognized by The Nonprofit Times, the leading business publication for nonprofit management nationally. Our commitment to developing a culture of excellence stems from our commitment to those we serve. We believe the youth and families that we serve are the most important persons in our agency and our front-line staff, who directly serve them, are the second most important. Our management team, our board and every department works to support our frontline workers because they are the tools we use to reach those we serve.

We work diligently to provide our workers with the skill sets and knowledge bases necessary to meet the needs of our ever changing population of consumers. Over the past year we have focused on training our staff in becoming a resiliency-oriented, trauma-informed agency. The Trauma Center out of Boston trained our staff in the ARC (Attachment, Self-Regulation and Competency) model. We have been working with Dr. Roy Wade, Head of Pediatrics at Philadelphia Children’s Hospital, in piloting a revised ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) assessment tool which will be released nationally this fall. Additionally, our work continues with Dr. Rick Shepler, Case Western, one of the leading resiliency experts in the country. Our commitment to our staff is our commitment to the youth and families of our community.

We fully appreciate our partners in this journey and we will continue to focus on the issues impeding the paths of positive growth and development. Healthy families and healthy communities are what we all want. Our commitment to those we serve is to be the best; building resiliency to promote change. Together, as a community, we can impact the lives of so many kids in need.

Duane Casares, LISW-S
CEO of Directions for Youth & Families, Inc.

Duane's Bio

As CEO of Directions for Youth & Families, Inc., Duane Casares has led the organization to be one of the leading mental health providers to Central Ohio youth and their families. The agency has adopted a resiliency oriented-trauma informed format that informs all of their programming. Duane has coordinated agency-wide changes in structure and programming leading to ODADAS, ODMH, and COA accreditation. He is a lead presenter and consultant with State Certified Provider status providing workshops and trainings specializing in Ethics, Cultural Competency in Human Service Practice and Effective Management in Developing Healthy Work Environments. His strong community relations include serving on numerous committees including the Human Service Chamber, United Way Education Council, Center for Healthy Families, and Professional Leadership Association. He has a weekly segment on Columbus Perspective addressing community and mental health issues on 97.1 The Fan radio station of Ohio News Network.  Duane received his Master of Social Work from The Ohio State University. His background as a Clinician, research/lecturer , and CEO has informed him as a presenter, trainer, consultant, CEU provider, and educator for  ACLU, ADAMH Board of Franklin County, American Association of Healthcare Administrators and Managers, American Healthcare Radiology Administrators Capital University, Columbus Bar Association, Columbus Metropolitan Libraries, Franklin Co. MRDD, Kroger Co., Licking Co. Human Services, Lucas Co. MRDD, Multiethnic Advocates for Cultural Competence, Mt. Carmel/ St. Ann’s, Mt. Vernon Nazarene College, Ohio Dept. of Jobs & Family Services, Ohio Dept. of Juvenile Justice, Riverside/Grant Hospitals, Riverside Radiologists Associates, Scioto County Human Services, The Ohio State University, and United Way of Franklin County.


Duane with KidsDuane Casares CEODuane Casares CEO


1515 Indianola Ave.
Columbus, OH 43201
Map and Directions
(614) 294-2661
fax: (614) 294-3247


3616 East Main St.
Whitehall, OH 43213
Map and Directions
(614) 251-0103
fax: (614) 251-1177


657 South Ohio Ave.
Columbus, OH 43205
Map and Directions
(614) 258-8043
fax: (614) 258-8123


3840 Kimberly Parkway
Columbus, OH 43232
Map and Directions
(614) 694-0203
fax: (614) 694-0245


39 W Winter St.
Delaware, Ohio 43015
Map and Directions
(740) 990-0254
fax: (740) 990-0255