Best Year Ever for Silicon Valley!
We are so proud and blessed for the awesome success we had last year and the amazing growth we’ve made. In March we opened another night at The Village (making it 4 nights) thanks to Leadership San Jose (LSJ) for taking us on as their community impact project for the year. We hosted an Open House in June, sponsored by LSJ, where we were awarded by Assembly Member Ash Kalra with a Certificate of Recognition for our work. In August, our Executive Director, Michele Huntzinger, won the San Francisco Giants’ Isabelle Lemon Community Spirit Award which awarded StandUp For Kids - Silicon Valley with a $2500 grant. We held 2 AMAZING fundraising events, a Breakfast Fundraiser in September by LSJ raising over $130k and launched our new video about our center and stories from our youth; and our 2nd Annual Charity Dinner, raising over $23k.
It doesn’t stop there…
1) Over 2900 kids came through our doors
2) 19 kids became employed
3) 10 kids received housing & 3 kids reunited with family
4) 20 kids being mentored
5) Doubled our volunteer pool to over 60 volunteers
6) Over 5000 volunteer hours
We really are making a difference & a positive impact in the lives of our homeless and at-risk youth. We will #EndYouthHomelessness!
StandUp For Kids - Silicon Valley has been in the area since 2008 with our mentoring program working one on one with homeless youth make progress in their life to get them off the streets. We grew our program in 2013 with street outreach and opening our outreach center, The Village. Teams went out on the streets in downtown San Jose sharing our mission in hopes they showed up at The Village.
Outreach Center: Our Outreach Center, The Village, is located in downtown San Jose and is very accessible to the youth in the area. We are open Monday, Wednesday and Thursday from 5:30pm - 8:00pm and Saturdays from 12:00pm to 3:00pm. The purpose of The Village is to provide a safe place for kids to feel welcome, escape the dangers of the streets and find support. We also address immediate needs of kids such as food, clothing, personal hygiene, supplies for out on the street, a hot shower, access to the internet for job searching, resume drafting, and overall access to things like applying for an ID, birth certificate, etc. The volunteers help with these needs in addition, if needed, medical care, education assistance, and transportation.
Mentoring: Our unique and ever-developing one-on-one mentoring program instills a sincere sense of personal importance, being cared about, and respected. We have helped kids obtain their State ID's, Social Security cards, and birth certificates. We've helped them find jobs, get back into school, and celebrate birthdays. Our mentoring program also offers joint creation of individual life plans to help each kid meet their specific personal goals for a fulfilled, sustained, and independent future off the streets. As well as the support, guidance, and resources necessary to assist each kid in executing their individual life plan, including education support, job training, job search skills and whatever else our kids need to be successful!
Street Outreach: Our Street Outreach efforts continue to play an important role in gaining the kids' trust and making them comfortable enough to join us at The Village. The Outreach team literally goes to the streets and locates homeless, street kids and at-risk youth. Through training, the street team can identify these kids from the general population because they often blend into the crowd for their own safety.
Street outreach encompasses befriending homeless youth and letting them know that there are caring adults who are concerned about their well-being and want to see them safe and successful. We handout food kits, hygiene products, blankets, and other comfort items such as a backpack. We inform them about the Village, provide them with materials and hope to see them again at The Village.