More Than a Youth Refuge
by: Pat Hernandez, May 6, 2011 10:05:00 pm
Statistics show that about 20-thousand adolescents leave foster care each year when they turn 18, but they often have significant difficulties transitioning into independent living. Jason Warner co-founded The Safe Spot.
He says it has one mission:
"And that was to open a drop in and resource center in the heart of Montrose for all youth and young adults, that would be a place they could come receive mentorship, tutoring, resources, life skills. We could help them put resumes together and they could help with job searches, and get them into a position where would truly know that they could believe in themselves and have the support that they needed."
Houston Mayor Annise Parker cut the ribbon to The Safe Spot after she issued a proclamation. She says she's excited because Houston needs a facility like this.
"I am frustrated because we've been dealing with this problem with our young people, runaways, "throw aways" that don't don't have a place to go over the years and there are so many lives lost. It's particularly problematic for kids aging out of foster care."
She says the government needs to do more to help youth transition into the adult world.
"So many kids after they age out of foster care end up on the streets, and they can't call home; they don't have safe homes, so we need to provide something for them."
The Safe Spot has helped over 200 young adults by providing them with tutoring, mentoring, access to the internet, and educational and training workshops. More information can be found at The Safe Spot Website.
From left to left: deMarco DeCiccio, co-founder Safe Spot, Mayor Annise Parker, Bev Engstrom, executive director Safe Spot and Jason Warner, co-founder Safe Spot