Empowering Youth For The Future (EYFTF)
The EYFTF program provides homeless youth with basic necessities such as, clothing, food, hygiene items, school supplies, case management, housing if needed, as well as, resources for medical care, counseling, and tutoring. In addition to basic necessities, HYC provides youth with life skills training and mentoring. Classes include college prep, employment and career development, cultural diversity, fiscal literacy, and independent living skills.
Mentors are community volunteers that assist the youth with their plan for the future. Most students want to go to college, enter the military or participate in a vocational training program. Working with the case managers, mentors help the youth create a plan to achieve their goals.
HYC was founded on the idea of providing basic needs so that homeless youth have the items they need to go to school. Thanks to the generosity of community donations homeless youth have access to clothing, hygiene items, school supplies, food cards, and bedding.
Most of us have the opportunity of turning “possibilities into excellence” every day. HYC kids have encountered many unexpected challenges that require greater effort, a myriad of coping mechanisms, the continual development of insight, the courage to move forward and the art of resiliency. In order to meet these needs, they need professional leadership as their “North Star” — a guiding force. The EYFTF program offers this leadership through an “umbrella approach” of case management, program supervision, counseling, community outreach, and community inclusion.
Through the EYFTF program we can help youth implement case plans that will move them forward promoting individual accomplishment that ultimately builds confidence and avoids distress. This model goes beyond providing the basic necessities; it advances our youth through identification of natural and community supports, resources and interests, education, employment, and coping mechanisms that result in real life experiences.
To address housing needs, HYC has implemented a Host Family program. Host homes are a low-cost, community-engaging strategy to address the immediate need without incurring the high costs of operating an emergency shelter or transitional housing program. The host family provides shelter, food and sometimes transportation for youth, while the organization delivers case management services.
According to the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth, the host family model is the most effective method in addressing housing for homeless youth. There is almost a 100% success rate for youth participating in this type of program to graduate from high school.
Placing youth in a home setting allows them to build stronger relationships and interpersonal skills, experience stability in their home life, learn positive life skills that will help them transition to independence, and help motivate them to attain this quality of life in adulthood.
Many homeless youth lack supportive adults in their lives. HYC mentors provide positive relationships between caring adults and youth while offering guidance, a listening ear, and an experienced perspective on life. Mentors provide youths with the support they need to overcome academic and personal barriers and the encouragement to make positive and healthy life choices.
Studies show that homeless youth who succeed despite personal, economic or social challenges often times do so because of a caring adult. The presence of a committed and competent role model for our students builds self-confidence and increases school success.
Mentors also help youth set attainable goals, map out plans to achieve those goals, and begin to successfully implement them. Most students want to go to college, enter the military or participate in a vocational training program. Working with the case managers, mentors help the youth create a plan to achieve their goals.
In addition, mentors help the youth with basic life skills such as how to create a budget, options for housing after they finish high school and employment opportunities. HYC offers Life Skills classes and employment assistance. The mentor reinforces what the students learn in those classes and helps them apply this knowledge in the real world.
HYC was founded thanks to the collaborative efforts of local service organizations and the ecumenical community. HYC immediately partnered with the local high school to determine and address the actual need of homeless youth in the community. Since then, HYC has created new and strengthened existing collaborations with community agencies, schools and businesses to provide a wide-range of services. In addition to providing basic needs, HYC helps youth identify and develop a plan for the future this may include college, vocational training or the military. HYC works with Phoenix Workforce Connections, West-MEC, Genesis Youth Program ,Goodwill Industries, local military recruitment offices and Maricopa County community colleges. HYC is in the process of expanding our partners to include local trade unions and specialty colleges.
HYC provides mentors to help youth develop a step by step process for achieving their plan for the future. Mentors are members of the ecumenical community, service organizations and community volunteers. To address the housing need for unaccompanied homeless youth, HYC developed the Host Family program. HYC established partnerships between school organizations, service organizations and the ecumenical community within the school district to establish the host homes and provide a support network to assist with transportation, tutoring, meals and other needs.
Currently, HYC provides homeless youth with clothing, hygiene items, school supplies and bikes.
To increase community awareness, HYC will soon open the Teen Exchange to the public. HYC will work with the local high schools to secure donations, as well as customer support. If you would like to donate teenage or young adult clothing, hygiene items, school supplies or bikes, please drop them off at our offices any time Monday through Friday from 8:00 am until 4:00 pm. Watch our Facebook page for updates on the Teen Exchange.