HistoryDo not move the ancient landmark that your fathers have set. - Proverbs 22:28
Youth Development International (YDI), was founded in 1959 by Jim Vaus the wiretapper for gangster and co-founder of Las Vegas, Mickey Cohen. Jim was saved at the 1959 Billy Graham evangelistic crusade in Los Angeles. Once saved, Jim turned his considerable energies toward the Lord and began a ministry to youth in New York’s Hell’s Kitchen area.
Over the years, YDI has started, stopped, sold, traded, given away and closed many ministries of faith begun to minister to youth. Among the ministries YDI has engaged in are:
Camps (NY and Virginia)
Hot Line (USA wide)
Boys residential home (CA)
Girls Residential home (CA)
Christian Schools (CA, MD, Mexico)
Church Plants (CA, Virginia)
Offices and adventures in NY, CA, Oregon, Virginia, Arizona and many other locations.
Everything YDI does is designed to minister to YOUTH.
Jim eventually turned over the YDI ministry to Mike MacIntosh and Horizon San Diego. Mike and Bob Botsford ran the nationwide help hotline meeting kids deepest and darkest needs.
That hotline often served 300,000 youth calls a month!
In 1991 Elizabeth Kubler Ross gave YDI 39 acres and a 85 bed lodge in Head Waters, Virginia. Since then approximately 40,000 kids came to camps and retreats and served in leadership there. Another 4,000 received Christ as Savior and at least another 4-5,000 made recommitments to Jesus.
In the years 1991-early 2000’s Jim’s son Roger Vaus and his wife Lorrie ran Head Waters Lodge and the camp and discipleship ministry. In this season Roger and a Lorrie tripled the average and properties and added much faith to a very fruitful ministry. In Head Waters YDI served families and youth and helped start 2 church’s and 2 Christian schools. It was a very fruitful season.
In 2019 with the Lord’s direction, YDI sold the Head Waters properties and has seen the Lord use Calvary Chapel University (CCU), which YDi has owned since 2012, experience 7 consecutive years of record enrollment, serve pastors and youth and ministry leaders on 6 of 7 continents and successfully be awarded TRACS candidacy for accreditation!
YDI prayerfully and with great humility and gratitude for those who have gone before us, is excited to see the hand of the Lord on His work, as we continue to “trust in the Lord with all your heart and in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight.” Prov 3:5-6
For more info on CCU (owned by YDI)
Click on more info.