As told by Samantha Annas, Street Outreach Manager
"This particular youth was our first trafficking victim that we worked with. When we met Jill (name has been changed), she rarely attended school and had a 38 (out of 100) GPA in math and earth science. We were able to utilize our Safe Harbour funding to help this family access therapy and tutoring, which has proven to make a night-and-day difference!
I spoke to Jill at our periodic check-in and almost didn't recognize her voice! This was a girl who couldn't look anyone in the eyes or really look past the floor, unable to have 'female friends' due to the fact that she KNEW she would be rejected or made fun of, and completely unable to maintain relationships due to her depression. But now Jill was bubbly and outgoing! She actually told me she was PROUD of herself.
Jill's family recently sent us an email to let us know that Jill passed her math regent -- with the highest score in her class. 'Thank you for all you've done for her,' the relative wrote. 'To hear that call from Jill and how proud she was is the most amazing gift you could have given to me. She's come such a long way.'"
The Street Outreach Project is a unique and compelling program. Our specialized, dedicated team builds rapport and relationships with youth throughout Saratoga, Rensselaer, Fulton, and Montgomery Counties.
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518 - 469 - 7897
Through these connections, we are able to assist youth who spend much of their time on the streets. Youth who do not have healthy support systems or who have been exposed to reoccurring traumas have a high likelihood of becoming homeless or being subjected to sexual exploitation, abuse, or violence. They are more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, engage in unsafe sex, suffer from mental health problems, and are frequently targeted by law enforcement. Many of the youth also have social, family, and academic issues or other barriers which prevent them from living healthy lifestyles or from pursuing their goals. Through our outreach efforts, our team offers the opportunity for these youth to build positive relationships with caring adults they can trust. This alone can be a powerful positive force in the lives of youth who are at high-risk, homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless.
The Street Outreach Project also provides basic needs assistance to youth including nutritious food items, basic clothing such as socks and coats, basic medical items, educational information, etc. Outreach services are delivered in high-profile areas where and when youth are known to congregate.
These services include:
- Street-based outreach and education
- Crisis intervention
- Access to emergency shelter
- Basic survival tools (clothing, food, hygiene supplies)
- Referrals to needed medical services
- Assistance with transportation
- Referrals to sexual assault and crisis rape relief counseling
- Referrals to drug and alcohol counseling
- Individual assessments and case managements
- Relationship building with trustworthy adults
- Coordination with community partners such as schools and law enforcement
- Assistance in finding housing and employment
- Referrals to family counseling
- Educational and skill-building opportunities
- Follow-up support
Through these outreach efforts, CAPTAIN offers youth resources to help them break dysfunctional cycles that keep them street dependent. Youth become less vulnerable to sexual exploitation and abuse, have fewer arrests related to substance abuse and/or violent behavior, and increase their ability to trust others. The Street Outreach Program helps youth identify and reduce barriers that may exist between themselves and their dreams and goals.