GREAT FALLS — Alliance For Youth in Great Falls is working on raising $100,000 dollars for their new Youth Resource Center.
The facility is designed to direct youth towards stable housing, employment, education, and how to contact churches and/or community members.
The facility has been getting input from youth who will be using the building.
Kristy Pontet-Stroop, executive director of the agency, said, “We have already had several youth experiencing homelessness walk through the space with us because we have wanted their input in regards to color, or 'What do you want to call it?' They are so excited, and they are ready to start utilizing this service.”
The building is meant to help the youth of Great Falls with a place to relax and unwind. The money will help with initial building updates, start-up equipment, and staffing support.
They have already received several donations. “We have had a lot of in-kind donations, so we have had a lot equate donations and expertise’s of skilled tradesmen helping us out and we have had donations for things like dish washers and refrigerator’s," said Nicole Zimmerman of Alliance For Youth.
The new Youth Resource Center is scheduled to open in January 2020.
The Alliance For Youth website provides this overview:
Youth will have access to food, clothing and hygiene items, in addition to shower and laundry facilities. The resource center will not be a shelter but will provide an important space for youth to escape the elements and—for a short time—a chance to rest and refocus. Our goal will be, as expeditiously as possible, to divert youth toward stable housing, employment, education, and well-being.
Alliance for Youth will coordinate meals, which will be donated from local businesses, churches and/or community members. There will be a dry-serve kitchen for re-heating and/or preparing non-grease item foods.
Alliance for Youth’s Resource Center will utilize community partners to move the youth from surviving to thriving. Initially, case management support (housing, transportation needs, obtaining a birth certificate or ID, job skills, etc.), community support groups (AA, NA, SMART Recovery) and other life skills support assistance will be provided within the center. In the initial stages, programming will vary as we develop and track common trends of individual needs of the youth. With that said, we will strive to meet youth where they are and find creative solutions to their individual needs.