Youth on Their Own hosts a free market, the mini mall, for homeless youth in Pima county. Items available to students include hygiene products such as: shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, razors, feminine hygiene products, deodorant, and more. The mall also offers a variety of non-perishable food items such as canned goods, cereal, granola bars, and pasta. Racks of donated clothing are also available to youth in the mall.
The mini mall depends on donations from our community. Recently, the mall received some big help from Elks Lodge #2592 in Green Valley. Mari Hodges has been the Community Activities Chairman of the lodge for the past 3 years. She organized a drive to help restock the mini mall with food, clothing, hygiene products, and more. The Elks Lodge is a nationwide organization which gives thousands of dollars every year to community programs. Some of these programs include: scholarships, scouting, athletic teams, veterans’ programs, and more. The lodge also gives to the local Battered Women’s Shelter, scouting programs, local schools, Homeless Veterans, Tucson Veterans Home, and local food banks, amongst others.
The Elks Lodge was inspired by the work Youth on Their Own does for Pima county youth, and that inspiration translated into a wealth of donations. Well over 100 individuals chipped in to donate. The lodge held a rummage sale in February and voted to have part of the proceeds go towards items for Pima County homeless youth, something we are very grateful for.