Welcome to StandUp For Kids - Washington DC!
Since May 2011, we have been connecting homeless and at-risk youth in DC with much-needed services around the District. We engage youth through street outreach and outreach centers at different locations throughout the city. The work we do is a very effective combination of stand-alone StandUp For Kids activities and collaborations with other youth-serving organizations. As a volunteer with StandUp For Kids - DC you will have a great opportunity to engage directly with youth in ways that are effective and impactful.
Becoming a volunteer is easy. There is an online orientation and self-paced training followed by an in-person training. The entire process is outlined on our Training Schedule. Head over now to get started with our online orientation.
- Street Outreach: The first and most important step in engaging homeless youth in a meaningful way is consistency. Meeting kids where they are at and showing up on a consistent basis are key to building a relationship based on trust. Establishing that connection lets kids know that there are adults who genuinely care about them and their well-being. Creating this essential bond is the first step toward helping these kids get off the streets and live a better life. We conduct outreach through two activities: street outreach and drop-in centers. Street Outreach counselors go out to the streets to reach homeless kids. DC's outreach counselors hit the streets to connect with District youth every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evening. If you want to be a counselor, check out the steps to get involved.
- Outreach Center: Outreach Centers are in a few locations in DC. Our volunteers staff drop-in centers for 2-3 hours a night at local libraries and other spaces donated by community organizations. The closure of the Martin Luther King, Jr. library at Gallery Place (a primary resource for the homeless population of DC) has created an urgent need in the homeless community, especially with homeless youth. We are redoubling our efforts at other libraries in the District and we need lots of volunteers! The more volunteers we have, the more of these centers we are able to operate and reach kids during this time of increased urgency.
StandUp For Kids - DC advocates for young people in this city and the whole nation to have the basic human rights of shelter, food, and security. We believe it is the responsibility of the entire community to keep our youth safe, sheltered, and supported. To learn more about supporting advocacy with the StandUp For Kids - DC chapter, email WashDC@standupforkids.org.
- It has been an exciting time for StandUp For Kids - DC! In the last year we have joined with other local nonprofits and community organizations to offer a drop-in center in the Gallery Place neighborhood of DC. With the closure of the MLK library in Gallery Place this has been a timely addition of services for the large population of homeless youth in this neighborhood. The drop-in center offers respite and connection to resources to dozens of youth every week.
- We have also recently expanded our drop-in center outreach to the Watha T. Daniel library in the Shaw neighborhood. This new effort is in need of volunteers for both the drop-in center and for street outreach to make youth in the neighborhood aware of our services.