Support, Structure, Inspiration
Our Youth Advocacy Program serves all children, from birth to 18 years old while they are with their family in both our Summit and Medina shelters. The goals of the Youth Program strive to encourage and support children’s social, emotional and educational health & growth during their time at the shelter. Using the Trauma-Informed Care model, age-appropriate activities are developed and implemented as the Youth Advocates aim to educate and guide the youth on their strength based skills, foster resiliency and provide them with support, productive and fun play activities and a safe environment.
The Youth Room offers a plentiful amount of arts & crafts, games, puzzles, toys, books and electronics. Structured activities, times of open play and programs are scheduled in the youth room throughout the week as well as quiet time for tutoring. We also offer a toddler room and teen room, separate from the free play area. With an abundance of toys & games available, toddlers grow their imagination while learning how to play with other children their age. Another room used frequently is our Teen Room, which offers a safe place for teens in shelter to work on computers and play video games. Allowing teens to have their own safe space in shelter provides them with a space to develop relationships with other teens they may be able to relate to and support one another.
While working with local school districts, our youth advocates help with school needs such as school enrollment, school transportation and providing supplies, and uniforms. While in shelter, children are able to attend the school they are currently enrolled in. Our Youth Advocates make transportation arrangements to and from the shelter to ensure the children are able to attend school each day. Field trips, community engagement programs and theatrical plays are also provided through a partnership program to provide the youth with a well rounded experience during their stay in shelter.
Further assistance offered to families through the youth program range from child care enrollment, community program referrals, youth advocacy support and parenting guidance as needed. Tutors are provided through Project RISE and interns from local universities collaborate with the Battered Women’s Shelter to provide these services we offer for our youth.
An example of a typical week might be: