VICTORVILLE, Calif – The Family Assistance Program was recently awarded a $600,000 federal grant from Family and Youth Services Bureau to open a youth shelter in the City of Victorville.
The shelter will be designed to address forms of victimization and/or poly-victimization of individuals under the age of 18.
The relation between youth running away from home and forms of victimization and emotional neglect have been correlated in many studies over the last 20 years—it is the leading cause of youth homelessness.
In the next year, 70 homeless youth in the High Desert will receive emergency shelter at the new location in Victorville.
According to the 2019 Point In Time Count, more homeless people are unsheltered and living directly on the streets in High Desert communities, than any other region of the county. The most recent Unaccompanied Homeless Youth Report showed that 21.6% of homeless youth surveyed in Victorville said they stayed outdoors in a public place the night prior.
Currently, the only other shelter for homeless youth in San Bernardino County is 30 miles south of Victorville.
Family Assistance Program reports that youth will refuse shelter because they do not want to leave their city and familiar settings. Executive Director, Darryl Evey, explains “it is extraordinarily hard for a young person to uproot themselves from their neighborhoods, schools, and familiar communities to move an hour away for shelter. This shelter will offer High Desert youths a location close to their support systems and develop resources for communities in need.”
“This grant will go towards helping one of the most vulnerable populations in our society: homeless youth. I am proud to have supported Family Assistance Program in their grant application, and I look forward to seeing the expanded services that this new shelter will provide” said Congressman Paul Cook.
“Homelessness has exploded in our state over the last several years. In fact, recent reports have found that California is home to 50 percent of the nation’s homeless population. We must come together to solve this crisis, including providing the necessary resources to ensure that we can help people get back on their feet. I want to thank the Family Assistance Program for being a tireless advocate for our homeless youth. They do so much good work in our High Desert community and I am very pleased that they were able to secure the funding to open this youth shelter in Victorville” said Assemblyman Jay Obernolte.