About Us

NEO strives to empower youth to make healthy lifestyle choices through music, art, skill development and recreation.

History of NEO

halli lynn - croppedNEO was started in 2008 by 19 year old college students, Halli Ellis and Lynn Skrukrud.  Both Halli and Lynn grew up in Nevada County and saw the devastating impact that was caused by the lack of things for youth to do. NEO was started as a drug prevention program, but has evolved to look at health and well-being from a holistic perspective.  From its start, NEO was created to go beyond traditional substance abuse prevention efforts by actively engaging young people to make healthy choices through positive alternative activities all while addressing key root causes of substance use and abuse in fun and meaningful ways for young people.  NEO originally operated as a pop-up teen center.  Hosting over 70 events throughout our community each year in over 25 locations, before opening our physical location in 2015.


neo11.) To create new events and opportunities in a safe environment that helps young people develop a sense of purpose.

2.) To use our positive influence to help youth build self-esteem and skills for success.

3.) To empower youth to make the choice to live a healthy lifestyle.

4.) To prevent youth isolation.


Emma, Hayley & MadisonNEO provides opportunities for young people to reach their full potential and the skills and confidence needed to make healthy choices, successfully navigating adolescents. While the focus of NEO is to keep young people drug and alcohol free, we believe that the most effective way to keep young people healthy is to approach health and well-being from a holistic view by addressing the root causes which contribute to substance abuse, depression, isolation, suicide and poor health. Because of this we address many issues such as positive socialization, nutrition, recreation, body image, education, healthy alternatives, positive lifestyle choices and community responsibility. Together, these efforts combine to provide a comprehensive, multifaceted approach aimed at building assets and resiliency ultimately increasing overall health and well-being.