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KVC Kentucky

Celebrating 25 Years of Compassion in Action at KVC Kentucky

For those we serve, our team, and our communities, this year is a big one! In 2024, KVC Kentucky celebrates 25 years of providing in-home, strengths-based, behavioral health care and family-strengthening support for children and families across the Commonwealth! From our roots in a tiny private practice above a little post office in Paris, Kentucky, to the extensive network of offices across the 78 counties we serve today, KVC Kentucky has always had a heart for providing wraparound services that put children and families first.

In celebration of 25 years in children and family services, join us as we reflect on our history, journey through the growth of our mission and vision, and look forward to what our future holds!

Reflecting on the Past: How KVC Came to Kentucky

KVC Kentucky

Liz Croney and Gina Klyachkin

While our organization dates back to 1999, it didn’t begin as part of KVC Health Systems. KVC Kentucky started as a private practice called Croney and Clark, Inc. It was founded by Elizabeth (Liz) Croney, a licensed clinical social worker, and her spouse  Dr. James (Jim) Clark,  Associate Professor in the College of Social Work at the University of Kentucky at the time. Together, they shared a vision to serve the most vulnerable populations in their community. 

Croney & Clark, Inc. was a company that began with a vision. Liz had worked extensively with rural children in many settings, including schools. Those years provided deep experience about the struggles children and families endured as they navigated a far-from-perfect child welfare system. A colleague who appreciated her work urged her to scale up her clinical successes through Impact Plus.

It wasn’t a bad idea—but it was pretty risky! To accomplish this, Liz needed to form a small business. As she gathered her small team around her, she shared that this company would always do three things. “First, we would always keep our promises to families and always ‘show up.’ Second, we would be an evidence-informed and data-informed business that would always strive to provide excellent care while using public dollars responsibly and with accountability,” Liz explained. Lastly, Liz committed that, “she would always invest in the professionals working alongside her to provide the best training, toolkits and moral support.”  It is reasonable to say that those three commitments underlying her vision for helping children and families at the highest level really paid off!  The company’s meteoric growth indicated that many others also saw it that way!

In 2009, having grown to over 75 employees, Liz Croney saw how their organization could multiply its impact if they joined forces with KVC Health Systems, a non-profit, child-centered organization with shared values that would allow Croney & Clark, Inc. to expand its footprint and broaden its service array to serve Kentucky communities even better.   

Memorable Milestones

KVC Kentucky has had many incredible milestones, from developing and piloting impactful programs to exciting seasons of growth and expansion. Here’s a timeline of some of our greatest accomplishments.

2005: Launched the Diversion Program

The Diversion Program was developed to provide clinical interventions to children at risk of being removed from their homes. Diversion is an outcomes-based program focused on the need for behavioral health and family-strengthening interventions. At the time, KVC Kentucky was a single office of around 50 employees. However, the footprint quickly expanded to reach eight contracted regions and grow the team by another 100 professionals.

2010: Expanded into New Regions

As we began to apply to the state of Kentucky for family preservation contracts, KVC Kentucky expanded. KVC opened two new offices in Eastern and Northeastern Kentucky.

KVC Kentucky Map

2012: Awarded Multiple Family Preservation Programs by the State

When the state of Kentucky established RFP processes for its family preservation programs, KVC applied and was awarded multiple contracts. As a result, our staff more than doubled in a week! We rapidly grew from three to eight offices — now covering 60 counties!

2018: Partnered with Jefferson County Department for Community-Based Services

KVC Kentucky’s partnership with the Department for Community-based Services allowed us to assist in completing past-due child abuse investigations and providing essential interventions and support to even more Kentucky families.

2021: Awarded Six of Eight State Contracts

When the state once again opened an RFP for its family preservation programs, KVC Kentucky was awarded six out of the eight contracts. This resulted in our expansion to 78 counties and over 300 professionally trained staff.

Mission and Values: How KVC Has Evolved

KVC Kentucky’s mission and values have always focused on serving Kentucky’s children and families.

“We started primarily focused on youth with significant mental health treatment needs and their families,” explains President of Kentucky Operations Gina Klyachkin.

Gina Klyachkin

Gina Klyachkin, President of Kentucky Operations


“Over these 25 years, we adapted to providing family strengthening services, substance use treatment, Telehealth, referral and support services, parenting and more.”




Our ultimate goal is to fill gaps and meet the needs of our clients. Accordingly, we’re always looking for opportunities to grow and improve. Explore some ways we have adapted our services to changing societal needs and trends through the years.

The KSTEP Program

One example of KVC Kentucky evolving with changing societal needs came with the development of the KSTEP Program (Kentucky Strengthening Ties and Empowering Parents) as a response to the growing opioid epidemic in our state. In collaboration with the Kentucky Department for Community-based Services and other community partners, this program was designed to address the growing number of children being placed outside of the home due to parental substance abuse. KSTEP provides quick access to substance use treatment and care coordination for parents. All while recognizing the complex dynamics of addiction and recovery. With the launch of this program, we have seen measurable improvements in the number of children being able to safely stay in the home in substance abuse situations. 

“[KSTEP] has been instrumental in keeping families together,” Moore explains.

Megan Moore headshot

Megan Moore, Senior Director of Innovation and Impact

“We see babies being born drug-free and getting to stay at home with their mom; we see children being reunified to their homes; we see children getting to stay at home with their parents; we see parents getting involved in recovery programs and being sober.”

Transitioning to Telehealth

We recognized the value of Telehealth service delivery before such options became vital in 2020. This focus on innovation and technology empowered us to rapidly launch Telehealth and expand this offering to meet the needs of our communities from the start of the COVID-19 pandemic when in-person services became difficult or impossible.

Piloting an MST Program

MST (MultiSystemic Therapy) is one of the most widely researched programs for youth with behavior challenges, making it a valuable asset for better serving adolescents in Kentucky. Our team of four MST clinicians has served 70+ youth. And we plan to continue expansion and outreach in the coming years.

EMBARK Program

Here at KVC Kentucky, we know how intentional, proactive support can make a big difference in both empowering parents and keeping families together. That’s why we recently opened the doors to our EMBARK program, which offers innovative support to expectant mothers who are in recovery. 

EMBARK stands for Elevate Mothers and Build Addiction Recovery in Kentucky. This wraparound program focuses on prevention. It serves mothers currently undergoing therapy, substance use treatment or medically-assisted care with Mountain Comprehensive Health Clinic. This holistic care covers support both in-home and otherwise, including housing, financial resources, parenting needs with evidence-based positive parenting strategies, safety practices like baby-proofing and connecting to resources in the community.

How KVC Has Impacted Kentucky and the Future of Social Work

As a data-driven organization, we take our responsibility to monitor outcomes for both stakeholders and clients alike seriously. We consistently analyze our results and make data-based decisions for the betterment of KVC Kentucky. Take a look at the impact we have had on Kentucky and the social work industry over the past 25 years:

  • 14,451 People Served More than 90% of the families we serve remain together one year after KVC Kentucky’s intervention.
  • In 2023, we positively impacted 14,000 individuals across 78 counties in Kentucky—a growth of 2,000 compared to the previous year.
  • Our team of professionals, whom Klyachkin affectionately calls “mission makers,” expanded by 19% in the last year, with KVC Kentucky now having over 300 employees across its coverage area.

See more statistics in our 2023 KVC Impact Report!

This impact is made possible by the dedicated professionals who work here! In an industry infamous for high burnout rates, we are proud to say that our employee retention rate is top-notch, from our core leadership team that has been together for almost 20 years to the newest social work graduates. 

As Moore explains, “You can’t take care of the families that we work with if you’re not taking care of yourself and your family.” To this point, we prioritize caring for our staff and supporting those who support our clients every step of the way.

Collaborations and Partnerships: Those Who Contribute to KVC’s Success

We wouldn’t be where we are today without the partnerships that have empowered our programs and services. But first and foremost it starts with the clients. “Our most key collaborations are with the individuals and families we serve,” says Klyachkin. “We are working daily with youth, adults and families that have often had negative experiences with systems and providers. Our number one focus is on meeting with our clients where they are and helping them achieve their goals.”

As a mental health services provider who recognizes the value of partnership and collaboration to provide even better services. We’re so grateful for the organizations who have joined our mission throughout these 25 years. The aforementioned Department for Community-Based Services has partnered with KVC Kentucky for 19 years to revolutionize our family-strengthening services. Many of our pilot programs would not have been possible without the collaboration of the Department for Behavioral Health, Developmental and Intellectual Disabilities.

We also want to extend our gratitude to the volunteers, donors and “partners in mission” who support our cause. Two of our most notable partners are Tempur Sealy and Sleep Outfitters. Klyachkin praises these partners, saying, “I am often in awe not only by their generosity but the true partnership in the mission that is evident in every interaction and conversation with these two amazing companies.”  

Gratitude and Acknowledgements

Megan Moore, Gina Klyachkin, Taylor Breeding, Denise Jones and Jarrod Dungan selfie

Megan Moore, Gina Klyachkin, Taylor Breeding, Denise Jones and Jarrod Dungan

We couldn’t celebrate this milestone without expressing our gratitude for those who have brought us this far. First of all, we must acknowledge Liz Croney and Dr. Jim Clark, whose hearts laid our foundation. We also need to thank those at KVC Health Systems who embraced our founders’ vision. They provided the support we needed to better serve our communities. These include Wayne Sims, Anne Roberts, Jason Hooper, Erin Stucky and countless more!

Finally, we want to thank our current leadership team for all of their dedication and hard work these last several years: Jarrod Dungan, Megan Moore and Taylor Breeding. None of this would have been possible without you!

Looking to the Future: KVC Kentucky’s Next 25 Years

Our vision is for the individuals we serve to be safe and connected to a strong family and a healthy community. As we look forward to the next 25 years and beyond, we hope to expand into prevention by providing support earlier on for families in need. “When we can provide support, education, services and resources upstream, we can prevent maltreatment and involvement in the system downstream,” Moore explains. To make this possible, we are looking into funding sources, partnership opportunities and new evidence-based interventions that can prevent crises and strengthen the families of Kentucky.

And you can also play a role in our next chapter! As the saying goes, it takes a village to make all this possible. We need not only volunteers and donors but also supporters and cheerleaders! Whether that means you engage with us on social media or stay up to date on our latest programs and developments here on the website, our hope is for every person in Kentucky to become part of our mission by celebrating families and looking for opportunities to empower one another.

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