When our teens are forced to spend a good portion of their time and energy in survival mode – figuring out where they will sleep tonight, what their next meal will be, or how they will meet their basic needs – being successful in school and achieving their goals cannot be a top priority for them. Runaway, homeless, and at-risk youth tend to be more heavily represented in alternative high schools, more likely to drop out of school, or seem to be behind in their classes and credits. CFS’ Youth Services are available to help overcome these challenges.
Through our Youth Services, CFS provides youth and their families several alternatives for dealing with different problems they may be facing. Youth Services staff provide 24/7 crisis intervention services, individual, family, and group counseling, independent living skills, case management, supervised activities, outreach services, information and referrals, community education, and advocacy. We may provide temporary or long-term housing through Host Homes or Pete’s Place Youth Shelter for teens that are unable to go home but are not, for whatever reason, candidates for foster care or adoption.
Visit www.cfsnwmi.org/programs/youthservices for more information about Youth Services at CFS.
Andy* is a senior at Glen Lake High School. He left home after conflict between his father and his father’s roommate escalated and became way too much for any teenager to handle.
Andy is very active in his church and enjoys attending youth group. After leaving home, he found a family at his church to live with until he graduated. Through our Youth Services, Andy and his “host” family receive financial and emotional support.
As a part of this “Host Homes” program, Andy worked with Youth Services counselors to learn independent living skills including budgeting, resume building, applying for college, social skills, nutrition planning, physical and dental health, and more. Youth Services counselors have proudly watched as Andy worked towards his goals. They helped Andy apply for food assistance, a new social security card, his driver’s license, and a new job near his home. Andy has learned many new skills that will allow him to become a productive adult in our community.
Though Andy has overcome significant challenges, he is on track to graduate this spring and plans to attend Northwestern Michigan College in the fall where he will study business and marketing. Andy continues to grow as a person, and discover new skills to learn. Way to go Andy!
*Name has been changed to protect our client’s privacy.