How YOTO Serves
Youth On Their Own’s program focuses on three components – financial assistance, basic human needs, and guidance – to ensure that youth experiencing homelessness have the resources necessary to stay in school and graduate.
Monthly Stipend Program: Students are eligible to receive a monthly stipend of up to $160 which provides a safety net in managing daily needs. To be eligible to receive a stipend, students must have passing grades in all classes (A’s, B’s, or C’s) and meet school attendance requirements (minimum 80% attendance rate).
Basic Human Needs
- Basic Needs / Mini Mall: The YOTO Mini Mall provides free basic needs items such as food, clothing, hygiene items, household goods, and school supplies. Students may visit the Mini-Mall in-person or request that items be dropped off at their school. All donations that stock the “Mini-Mall” are provided by the generosity of community members, organizations, and businesses.
- Transportation: Monthly bus passes and bicycles (when available) provide students with transportation to school, work, and healthcare appointments.
YOTO provides students with referrals to other social service and healthcare agencies to ensure that each receives the support required to graduate from high school. The organization has created new and strengthened existing collaborations with local community agencies, organizations, and businesses to provide a wide-range of services including, but not limited to:
- Housing Referrals
- Personal Counseling
- One-on-One Success Coaching
- Medical, Dental and Vision Care
- Refurbished Computers
- Employment Opportunities and Community Involvement Activities
The Bill Assistance Program offers emergency financial assistance that may be requested once per semester to assist students with living essentials (e.g., rent, utilities, or medical expenses). To receive funds, students must also complete a financial planning workshop.
Youth On Their Own also offers a Workforce Readiness Program that helps students prepare for life after high school. Without the stability of a family and the lack of parental guidance, most of the youth in our program cannot imagine what the next day of their life will bring… let alone plan their future career paths. The YOTO Workforce Readiness Department provides guidance, mentoring, and training in:
- Pursuing possible educational scholarship opportunities
- Assessing skills to determine possible career paths after high school
- Preparation for job placement, from application to resume to interview