February was a busy and joyful time at HOPE 4 Youth as we watched more youth start new chapters and welcomed dozens of new volunteers.
Good lucks and welcomes
As the month began, two young people completed their goals while living at HOPE Place and moved into market-rate apartments. We will continue to support them as they maneuver this important next step in their lives.
On Feb. 7, one of the open rooms became the temporary home of another young person in crisis. The story that developed is a good example of how our services support young people on a journey toward stable housing.
We met this young man when he came to the HOPE 4 Youth Drop-In Center for some help. While getting to know him, we determined the best way to offer support was by inviting him to stay in our transitional housing. He accepted and will live at HOPE Place until he achieves the goals he’s set and finds reliable, long-term housing.
The other open room at HOPE Place also has a new guest. Another young person moved in during the February cold snap and was thankful to have a warm, safe space to begin to rebuild her life. She was referred to us by colleagues at one of our partner agencies who knew our personalized support would be a good fit for the situation. Our staff is already working with the young woman to build a plan that results in her being able to maintain safe, long-term housing.
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High-fives (with mittens on)
We’d like to recognize team members Mica, John and Jean for assisting in coordinating all these February moves. Getting two apartments quickly cleaned, painted, repaired and ready for move-in is hard work — especially during a string of days with below-zero temps. Thanks to everyone’s help, we were able to move fast and stay warm.
Cold temps, warm hearts
Our staff and hearty volunteers don’t let a deep freeze dampen spirits. In fact, during the week of Feb. 8-12, the cold snap inspired more than 30 new volunteers to join our mission. That’s created a lot of good news from Nikki, our manager of community engagement:
- A volunteer has offered to help the youth we serve with their taxes.
- Two retired art teachers are developing virtual art classes for HOPE Place residents.
- Volunteers are training to cover weekend shifts at HOPE Place.
- All drop-in center meals are covered through mid-March.
Wanted: More meal-makers
Ongoing volunteers are still needed for the evening meal service at our drop-in center. Our goal is to offer a fully prepared evening meal to youth visiting the center in Anoka.
Volunteers are asked to prepare or purchase a meal to serve on-site to 10-12 youth and volunteers and deliver it to the center for dinner. In non-pandemic times, we also ask that the lead volunteer organize a small group of 2 to 4 people to serve the meal. During the COVID-19 outbreak, meals may be dropped off at the center to be served by staff members, if a volunteer is uncomfortable serving in person.
For more information, or to sign up, email Nikki at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 763-323-2066, ext. 114.