Thursday, August 26, 2010

Want to volunteer with SUFK?

Our next volunteer orientation is Wednesday, September 8th from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Worcester Public Library (Banx Room).

RSVP to to receive an orientation packet.

Welcome Amber Dudley and Amanda Ethridge!
We are pleased to announce we have two new volunteers: Amber Dudley and Amanda Ethridge. Both are trained as outreach counselors and Amber has already jumped into weekly street outreach.

What would you like to hear about?
As this is a weekly blog, I'd love to get some feedback and suggestions on what you would like to hear about. In the next couple weeks, I'll be talking about local services in a "Did you know" theme to help promote awareness of all the great services out there for youth, but would really love recommendations for the months to come. E-mail me at

Thursday, August 19, 2010

SUFK Worcester Volunteers are the Best

Just in case we don't say it enough, SUFK Worcester Volunteer are the best!

Our volunteers not only donate several hours to street outreach. Many also help keep us going on the administrative end with fund development, time tracking, marketing, etc.

The Grants team continues to be hard at work researching grants for us. Both Liz Burrows and Donna Katsoudas (Co-Executive Directors) are helping the grants team establish proposals for future services that could use some funding.

The team is also working on ways to improve our outreach center. Donna K. and Kathy Senior (Outreach Counselor) have reached to Community Health Links to find out where there are possible gaps in the services offered to youth.

Also, the team did a great job organizing our first big fundraising event: The Community Fundraiser at Moe's Southwestern Grill). Thanks to Rob Donnelly (long distance volunteer) for creating the flyer for this event. And a special thankyou to Moe's Southwestern Grill for hosting the event for SUFK - Worcester!

Grab a Burrito on Thursday, September 16, 2010 (Your Purchase Helps SUFK - Worcester!)

Thursday, September 16, 2010
11:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Moe's Southwestern Grill
Shrewsbury, MA

Print the flyer and bring it with you.*

*You must present a flyer for 10% of your purchase to go to SUFK - Worcester.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Youth Homelessness Exists

Here's a request.

Search the web this week for youth homelessness articles.

Over the past two weeks, I've been searching google each day for relevant articles pertaining to youth homelessness. When I find an article that covers National youth homelessness or an important theme on youth homelessness, I post the article to our Facebook Fan page.

What I didn't expect to find was so many articles. Articles all across the country talking about the same thing - the growing numbers of youth finding themselves on the streets.

How do they find themselves on the streets?
Some articles discuss the growing gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer population (referred to as GLBTQ for short). Kicked of their homes for coming out, they have no where to go but the streets with the lack of services out there for them.
Other articles focus on kids that have aged out of foster care. They turn 18 and lose all the services and support they've been accustomed to as kids. They have no family, no one to go home to or to call just to talk. How many of us call our parents on the way home from work just to chat and hear their voices? These kids are missing that support system.

The articles range in theme but one thing is clear - youth homelessness exists. The problem is that so many want to solve this issue, but how do we solve it? We need to get out there, find the kids, assist them.

They need a family. A support structure. They need someone who says "I care about you".

They need someone to say they have a life worth living and that they can live it.

Think about it.

The solution isn't an overnight solution. It's a commitment to our youth that will take years. But it's a commitment that needs to happen.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Latest Update from Worcester

The Worcester team has been hard at work in several areas:
  • Our grants team is currently created a fund development spreadsheet and working on some grant applications. This team is fairly new (Brian Finley and Jason Goranson joined in Spring 2010). It's amazing to see how much they've done in such a short time.
  • The outreach team is growing! This means we can expand our outreach hours and days. Several outreach counselors have been trying new times and new locations. We still ensure we go to the same location on our regular Tuesday night outreach, but we have also found another busy location in Worcester to start outreaching.
  • Cleon McClure, Co-Director of Adult Training, successfully facilitated his first Basic Volunteer Training this month.
  • We have two new volunteers: Amber Dudley and Amanda Ethridge. Both will join the outreach team after outreach training this Saturday. Welcome to the group, Amber and Amanda!
  • The group is looking at other ways to raise funds. Stay tuned for more information on our Moe's Southwestern Grille Day!
Okay, that's it for now. Have a great week and see you again next Thursday!