Dominic Herbst, Bethesda Family Services Foundation president, was the chief adult/juvenile probation officer for two counties in Pennsylvania when he realized the need for a comprehensive alternative youth program within the community. In 1983 Herbst created Bethesda Day Treatment Center* and developed the premise of what has become Bethesda's Relational Healing approach, based upon his desire to bring healing and restoration to youth and their families.
Bethesda Family Services Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization incorporated in 1995, was founded by Dominic Herbst to replicate the model he had established in Pennsylvania throughout the United States. The impetus for this endeavor was provided by a modest grant from the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention. Many programs have directly benefited from the Bethesda approach, including those in Oklahoma, Maryland, Florida, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Minnesota, California, Georgia, New Mexico, Ohio, Indiana, Washington, Michigan, Virginia, and Pennsylvania.
Our mission of healing hearts and changing lives of troubled individuals and distressed families is accomplished through a variety of venues and interactions, including:
Successes have been featured on national and primetime television:
- ABC World News Sunday
- Victory Over Violence, hosted by Walter Cronkite, produced by Arnold Shapiro Productions
- Sticks and Stones, produced by George Rivera Productions
- Breaking the Cycle of Violence, produced by the National Education Service
- BAD DADS, a one-hour special on Bethesda's Parenting Program, hosted by George Foreman, produced by Arnold Shapiro Productions, filmed at the Lewisburg Penitentiary
*Bethesda Family Services Foundation has no current or ongoing relationships with Bethesda Day Treatment Center or its successor PATH.