Columbus, OH – ESC (Emergency Shelter Care) embodies NYAP’s mission statement while advocating for our youth
NYAP’s mission statement is “NYAP is an energetic instrument of compassion and change in the lives of children, youth and families and the systems, structures and practices that affect them.” One of our previous clients, Gonja (permission has been given to use his name) is a perfect example of living our mission and advocating for youth.
Gonja is a previous client of our Emergency Shelter Care program in Columbus, OH. He has been in and out of ESC and residential programs. At one point while in ESC our staff found a foster home for him. The day before he was to go to one of our foster homes, the referring agency decided that he needed to go back to residential services. He did not want to go to residential and instead went AWOL. He remained AWOL until he turned 18.
While in ESC he was recognized as a “peacemaker” and always helped the underdog. Gonja is an outgoing young man with a fun-loving personality who is functionally homeless. He is linked with the Emancipation program at Franklin County Children Services (FCCS). They will help him establish a residence; however he needs employment and a savings of at least $100 in order to become eligible for housing assistance.
Robyn Morris, Clinical Director of the ESC Program, has advocated for Gonja to begin working with the ESC/Independent Living programs as a Maintenance Technician Apprentice. In this apprenticeship Gonja will be linked with the Emancipation Program at FCCS, will be able to learn marketable skills to assist him in future endeavors, will be able to learn self-responsibility and establish short and long goals for himself, as well as maintain relationships with staff through which camaraderie and mentoring will become an additionally healthy, pro-social support system.
Gonja is a welcome addition to our NYAP family. Kudos to ESC staff for recognizing the potential of this young man and advocating for him!