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Youth Services

What began over 30 years ago as outreach services to runaway/homeless youth in the community has evolved into a wide array of Youth Services to meet the growing needs of homeless, “at risk” and runaway youth ages 12 to 21. Family & Children’s Service provides both residential services and non-residential services in order to meet the ever changing needs of youth in our community.

A multitude of socioeconomic factors contribute to family instability in our Niagara Region and this instability greatly impacts our young people. Youth who for many reasons are not able to go home after school or find themselves in unsafe situations at home need a place where they can go to be safe, a responsible caring adult they can turn to for assistance with the immediate crisis they are facing or help with their transition to young adulthood. Crisis intervention is available 24/7 to assess the crisis and offer services based on the needs of the youth. Family & Children’s provides emergency shelter services for homeless youth at Casey House Shelter, transitional living program for pregnant and/or parenting youth at The CRIB and non-residential Transitional Services to youth in the community.

The philosophy of our Youth Services is that all youth should be treated with respect and offered assistance in acquiring the life skills necessary to become confident, self-determining, capable individuals.

Web Links
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline www.loveisrespect.org
New York Coalition for Homeless Youth www.nychy.org
National Runaway Switchboard www.1800runaway.org

Casey House

Casey-HouselSometimes running away seems to be the only option left to a youth. Frequently it is not, but a youth may need time and professional guidance to explore other options.

Casey House, located at 710 Cedar Avenue in Niagara Falls, is a twelve-bed co-ed short-term emergency shelter for runaway, homeless, ‘at-risk’ and ‘throwaway’ youth ages 12 to 17. Crisis intervention services are available 24/7 in order to respond immediately to a youth in need. The youth can contact Casey House directly at 716-285-7125 or the youth may be referred by a parent, guardian, school staff, law enforcement personnel or other concerned individual.

When a youth enters shelter, his/her parents or legal guardians are notified that the youth is in shelter in a safe location. The Casey House staff maintains on-going contact with the family or guardian while the youth is in shelter.

A Casey House staff member can assess the crisis and offer services based on the needs of the youth. Short-term, crisis oriented counseling is provided; and the staff will work with the youth and family to help resolve the current crisis and to help them learn new ways of communication to prevent family issues from reaching crisis status in the future. If additional issues are present, the family and/or youth are referred to long-term counseling. This is frequently the case, because running away is often a symptom of underlying problems with the family system. Casey House works closely with other community service providers to ensure that the youth is linked with appropriate services in the community. Family reunification is the goal when possible; and in those cases when reunification is not an option the Casey House staff work to facilitate an alternate stable living environment for the youth.

A warm safe bed at Casey House is better than life on the streets.

Teen 24/7 Crisis Hotline 716-285-7125

Web Links
National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline http://www.loveisrespect.org/
New York Coalition for Homeless Youth http://www.nychy.org/
National Runaway Switchboard http://www.1800runaway.org/

The CRIB Maternity Group Home

crib-logoFamily & Children’s Service identified “at-risk” pregnant and parenting youth as one of the highest priority groups in need of services in our community. Recognizing that it is not safe for many young people to return home, especially pregnant and/or parenting youth and their children, Family & Children’s Service opened The CRIB in the fall of 2013. The goal of The CRIB program is to help these young people complete their education, make a successful transition to self-sufficient living, build permanent connections with caring adults and learn to care for their children appropriately.

The CRIB is a Maternity Group Home that provides transitional living program services to pregnant and/or parenting At-Risk, Runaway and Homeless youth and their children in a safe and nurturing environment. Pregnant and parenting youth not only need basic necessities like food and shelter, they must also learn to be effective parents.

Services Provided

The CRIB provides an array of services to meet the short and longer term needs of pregnant and parenting youth to help them achieve their full potential including:

  • Safe and stable living accommodations
  • Health and nutrition
  • Education in parenting, healthy child development and discipline
  • Services to promote educational advancement and job placement
  • Money management, budgeting and using credit
  • Housekeeping and food preparation
  • Developing a service plan that focuses on individual strengths and promotes the successful transition to self-sufficient living
  • Helping youth build permanent connections with caring adults

Who can apply?
The CRIB program is for pregnant and/or parenting At-Risk, Runaway and Homeless Youth ages 16—21. Applicants must complete the intake process.

For more information or to schedule an Intake Appointment call 716-236-7870.

Web Links

HHS Family & Youth Services Bureau    www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/fysb/resource/mgh-fact-sheet

Transitional Services

Many youth in the community are struggling to make the transition to young adulthood, but they do not need emergency shelter services. The Transitional Services Program is available to youth ages 16 to 21 years old to help them learn the skills necessary to become strong, independent young adults.

Services are provided FREE of charge and often include

  • Residential assistance
  • Educational assistance
  • Counseling
  • Job hunting /Interviewing skills
  • Social services (DSS) assistance
  • Medical assistance
  • Skills to help young adults become independent and self-sufficient
  • Youth can meet with the Transitional Youth Services worker at Casey House Shelter or in other community settings.

For more information to make an appointment with the Transitional Youth Services Worker
call Casey House at 716-285-7125.

24/7 Domestic Violence Hotline

716-299-0909

24/7 Runaway Youth Hotline

716-285-7125