Agencies Launch Partnership to Help Homeless Teens
Who: Rescue Ministries of Mid-Michigan and Youth Protection Council
What: The organizations seek to help homeless teens
When: Wednesday, May 12 (the official launch date)
Where: Great Lakes Bay Region (Saginaw, Midland and Bay City)
The face of homelessness has changed and the most vulnerable being youth. Dan Streeter, CEO of Rescue Ministries of Mid-Michigan and Mary Ellen Johnson, President and CEO of the Youth Protection Council, are partnering to inform homeless, runaway, and at-risk youth that there is hope and a temporary place for them.
In 2019, Michigan reported 746 teens who were homeless. Nationally, it is estimated that 1 in 30 youth between the ages of 13-17 experience homelessness, unaccompanied by a parent or guardian, through the course of a year. Both Youth Protection Council and Rescue Ministries agree that most homeless youth will not come forward about their plight, until they run out of friends to stay with or a couch to sleep on. “We want to fix that,” states Streeter. “We want to remove any barrier keeping a hurting and scared teen in a stressful situation.”
Youth Protection Council oversees Innerlink in Saginaw, a shelter for homeless and runaway teens and Rescue Ministries offers the Samaritan Youth Shelter in Bay City. Both Innerlinkand Samaritan Youth Shelter will accept teens from anywhere in the Great Lakes Region.
“We know that most youth are on social media. “That’s where we’re at too,” states Mary Ellen Johnson. The two agencies put together contact information on Instagram, Twitter, Tic Tok and Facebook. “We’ve also created Teen911 a special website and 24-hour hotline a teen can visit or call if they’re in need of a safe place to stay.”
If you are a homeless teen or know of one, please call 866-TEEN-911 (866-833-6911) or visit the website at www.teen911.org As mentioned, youth can also reach out on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or Tic Tok using the same moniker.