Outreach and Prevention Services include Responsive Attentive Peers (RAP) life skills groups for youth, offered at community locations such as youth clubs, schools and community centers. Project Safe Place involves a network of businesses, public places and volunteers in reaching out to youth in crisis. Youth Advocacy Council involves area youth, including current and former clients, who act as ambassadors to the community and meet regularly to provide feedback about programs, lead activities in the shelter, and create a forum for youth to have a voice in the community. Leadership and Diversity Conferences are one-day events in which youth learn leadership and advocacy skills, or tackle specific challenges to gain an understanding of trials that come with trying to operate in today’s world with those problems.
STAR Family Connection is a free counseling program for the families of youth ages 0-17 who are running away, truant, experiencing family conflict or committing delinquent offenses but not on formal probation. The strength-based program is offered in the counties of Grayson, Cooke, Fannin, Wise, Montague, Hunt, Lamar, Wichita, Archer, Clay, Hopkins, Delta, Rains, Collin and Rockwall, and includes three parts:
The STAR program has a very high success rate. Three months after counseling services end, each family is contacted to determine how they are doing. Over 90% of the families state that their situation has improved.
Universal Child Abuse Prevention services were added to the STAR program in 2003 to increase knowledge and awareness of child maltreatment and to promote positive parenting. This is accomplished in part through a series of community meetings on topics pertaining to child abuse prevention and safety.
Emergency Shelter for youth. The 14-bed temporary shelter for males and females ages 10-17 provides runaway, homeless and abused youth with a safe place to stay until they can be reunited with their family or an alternative living arrangement can be secured. Discovery is our copyrighted summer program for youth residing in the emergency shelter. In this innovative program, the daily schedule is enmeshed with fun enrichment activities and experiential learning, including arts and crafts, tours of museums, field trips, games, group discussions, community service projects and guest speakers.
For homeless youth ages 16-21, the Transitional Living Program provides housing and support services for longer-term needs (i.e., living accommodations, food, clothing, counseling, outreach; referrals, aftercare, educational and workforce readiness skills and related services) of runaway, homeless, street youth and those transitioning out of foster care in a longer-term setting. Youth will be required to attend school and/or obtain and maintain gainful employment while in the program, and attend monthly life skills classes to give them the resources they need to never be homeless again. Once they obtain private housing, a year of follow-up care will be offered, with the goal of the youth maintaining their independence and never being homeless again.
This collaborative project consists of 6 agencies providing homelessness prevention, emergency shelter and rental assistance. Agencies within the collaboration grant include the Grayson County Shelter, Salvation Army, Crisis Center of Grayson County, Four Rivers Outreach, and the Texoma Council of Governments. NTYC is the lead agency and fiscal agent. NTYC will provide emergency shelter to unaccompanied minors ages 10-17, including meals, clothing, education, employment, Case Management, lifeskills; and rental assistance to youth aging out of the emergency youth shelter or foster care system. The Emergency Shelter Grant Program is funded through the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.