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New Youth Haven in Kirkland opens to support youth
Public officials and youth advocates gathered Tuesday for a ribbon-cutting celebration at a new Friend’s of Youth facility. Boys and girls ages 11 to 17 have will have the opportunity to find safety and stability at the Youth Haven home in Kirkland.
The newly constructed home houses a 20-year-old program that provides a safe and nurturing home to youth who are experiencing a family crisis, have run away or are homeless. It consolidates two existing sites in Bellevue and Kenmore under one roof and creates capacity to serve up to 17 youth, both boys and girls.
“It is remarkable what we can accomplish for youth in need through partnerships between private non-profit organizations and governments,” said Washington First Lady Trudi Inslee, who presided at the official opening of the new Youth Haven home. “We have 27,000 homeless youth in Washington. It would be wonderful if we could clone the Youth Haven model throughout the state.”
The new two-story Youth Haven facility is the second project completed at the agency’s new Kirkland campus, following the recent opening of the new Youth Services Center with administrative and counseling offices.
“This new home strengthens our ability to respond to youth in crisis in our community,” said Friends of Youth CEO Terry Pottmeyer. “We are heartened by the community support for this program and its new home in the community.”
Also joining in the celebration were Kirkland Deputy Mayor Doreen Marchione, King County Housing Finance Program Coordinator John deChadenedes, and Kirkland Mayor Joan McBride.
Construction of Youth Haven was funded in part by grants from the state of Washington’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund, King County and A Regional Coalition for Housing (ARCH). Additional support came from the Bellevue Rotary, the D.V. and Ida McEachern Charitable Trust and the Matsen Family.
Friends of Youth officials continue fundraising for their $7.5 million Capital Campaign, which also includes construction of the new Homeless Youth Services Center in Redmond that opened last October, and the final phase that will include four transitional housing facilities at the Kirkland campus.
Friends of Youth’s programs include:
· Homeless youth services, which provide street outreach, overnight shelter, individual case management, employment and transitional housing programs for homeless youth and young adults throughout East and North King County and South Snohomish County;
· Youth and family services, which provide mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment, school-based prevention education and parenting programs in geographic areas covering the Issaquah, Snoqualmie and Riverview school districts;
· Residential services, which provide therapeutic residential services, including foster care and emergency shelter, to youth under 18.
Friends of Youth advocates continue their dedication to providing a comprehensive range of therapeutic services for youth, young adults and families. With more than 60 years of experience, national accreditation and 20 sites serving 17 cities, the agency provides safe places to live and emotional support for youth and families in challenging circumstances.
For more information, please visit www.friendsofyouth.org.