When the doors of the Drop-In Center close, many youth find themselves couch-hopping or back on the streets. Most of these youth want to stay in the north metro suburbs as it is their home – they do not want to go into urban downtown areas where the youth-centric shelters are located.
In 2016, 732 young people walked through our Drop-In Center doors. We also see at least 20 youth a quarter “living” in places not meant for habitation. Recent reports from Anoka County Coordinated Entry show that there are more than 40 youth “singles” on the housing waiting list, 28 in need of transitional housing. This showed that there is a dire need for HOPE Place, our new transitional housing program located in Coon Rapids, as well as other housing options for homeless young people.
HOPE Place is one of our long-term solutions to ending youth homelessness. The first 12 young people (ages 18-25) are calling HOPE Place home for an average of 12-24 months while they learn the skills necessary to leave their status of homeless in the past and walk out the door as a independent, self-sufficient adult.
We raised a lot of money to open the doors, but still have a lot of work to do to keep the doors open. The cost to remodel the building was $850,000 and we will need $350,000 for first year of operational costs. Recently, we were also made aware of the need for a new roof. The cost of the roof will be $94,000 and you can help us raise it by donating here.