November 2009

Bright Idea: Give Youth a 'Safe Place' to Go

A restaurant, a fire station or a library could save a young person’s life. In more than 1,500 communities across the nation, these and other sites have been designated “Safe Place locations” where young people can go when they have nowhere else to go. Safe Place sites provide emergency assistance to youth who are homeless or abused or who have clashed with their families.

Primary Sources: Preventing and Responding to Youth Homelessness

Youth homelessness is strongly associated with living in poverty, not finishing school, not having a job, being in foster care or the juvenile justice system, getting pregnant or having a child, drinking and using drugs, and having poor mental and physical health. All of those factors are important for youth workers to recognize and address, as the authors of Covenant House Institute’s "National Youth Status Report" have pointed out (April 2009).

Right on the Money: Get Everyone in on Grant Writing

In these tough economic times, hiring a full-time grant writer or using a consultant may not make the most financial sense. As an alternative, small nonprofits can tap into the talents of their staff to put together grant proposals.

“What you ultimately want is to use your staff’s greatest strengths,” says Kristen Valentine, chief fundraiser for Bread for the City, a social service agency in Washington. “You want to find out what people do well and have them do it.”

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