November 2011

National Runaway Prevention Month Celebrates Ten Years of ‘Making the Connection’

For ten years, the Family and Youth Services Bureau, the National Runaway Switchboard – a federally funded crisis hotline for at-risk youth and their families – and a range of national and local organizations have marked November as National Runaway Prevention Month. Each year, FYSB, NRS and their partners spend November raising awareness about the issues facing runaway youth and educating the public about solutions and the role they can play in preventing youth from running.  

November is Native American Heritage Month

Here are some ways to pay tribute to the rich ancestry and traditions of Native Americans during Native American Heritage Month this November:

Bright Idea: Blog Brings Street Outreach to a Wider Audience

When Dennis Lundberg, who helps direct Yellow Brick Road Street Outreach in Portland, OR, started a blog for his program, he had one simple goal: connect with the increasingly online-savvy homeless youth population in his city. Five years later, the blog has grown to include everything from photos of nightly outreach efforts, links to relevant research and new job opportunities for youth.

Mural Contest Winners to Be Honored

The winners of the first Family and Youth Services Bureau mural contest, held earlier this year, will unveil their colorful new mural on November 15 at the 2011 National Runaway and Homeless Youth Grantee Conference, in Portland, OR. 

NCFY Recommends: FYSB Grantees on Film

A film featuring Family and Youth Services Bureau grantees Larkin Street Youth Services and New Avenues was chosen by Facebook fans as the winner in a film contest sponsored this year by sock manufacturer No Nonsense and its "Socks for America" campaign.

When No Nonsense decided to hand out a million pairs of socks to homeless families and youth last summer, the company's volunteers took along video cameras to capture the stories of the people they met along the way. The result is four films about various facets of family and youth homelessness in America.

Bright Idea: A Runaway and Homeless Youth Program Makes Suicide Prevention a Priority

Suicide is the third leading cause of death among U.S. 15- to 19-year-olds, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But in Iowa, it’s an even bigger problem, killing more young people than anything else, except traffic accidents. To combat this epidemic, an Iowa Runaway and Homeless Youth Program grantee has made suicide prevention one of its highest priorities – right up there with giving youth a place to stay.

Primary Sources: In Search of More Nuanced Ways to Classify -- and Serve -- Homeless Youth

The Heterogeneity of Homeless Youth in America: Examining Typologies.” Research Matters, September 2011.

What it's about: Researchers studied homeless youth in Detroit to try to come up with new, more accurate ways of defining who homeless youth are and what services they need.

NCFY Recommends: Life Skills Through Gaming

According to the website Gameful, people around the world spend three billion hours a week playing computer games and video games. Youth workers and youth alike can use Gameful as a resource to access free games that:

Enter the 2012 FYSB Mural Contest -- and Bring Color to Your Program!

Photograph of young people in front of their completed mural.Want to make your space brighter and showcase the creativity of your youth?  Looking for an engaging life skills activity with a real reward? 

Enter your young people in the Family and Youth Services Bureau's Runaway and Homeless Youth Mural Contest. Youth could win the materials to paint a mural in your program.

National Clearinghouse on Families & Youth | 5515 Security Lane, Suite 800 | North Bethesda, MD 20852 | (301) 608-8098 |