After completing their work with VCRHYP agencies, 92% of youth receiving services exit to a safe living situation.
Stereotypical notions of runaway and homeless youth do our communities a tremendous disservice. It is simply wrong to assume that runaway youth are defiant young people who won’t obey parental authority.
The truth is that young people leave home for a variety of reasons. Sometimes they leave because of a pattern of ongoing disagreements with parents. Sometimes a youth finally makes the decision to leave home after a lifetime of abuse. Sometimes a youth is rejected (or ejected) due to their sexual orientation. And some young people are forced to leave home by parents who can simply no longer afford to provide for a child.
Runaway or homeless youth typically can’t be identified by sight. They dress like their peers, act like their peers, hang out with their peers, even continue to attend school with their peers. However, unlike their peers, at the end of the day they may not know where they are going to sleep, or where their next meal will come from.
These are the stories of young people from across Vermont who have received help from VCRHYP agencies, as told in their own words:
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"Vermont’s model is elegant, simple and visionary. Our Coalition works; it challenges each professional youth worker and agency leader who participate to strive even harder, to work even smarter, to become more focused, and to make sure that youth development is front and center in each and every decision we make.” Allyson Villars, Executive Director Youth Services, Inc.