Homelessness is not only an adult problem . . . countless teens also find themselves living on the streets. This problem is most prevalent among youth that age out of foster care and suddenly find themselves homeless, without a support network, and completely unprepared to survive on their own. In partnership with the Jacksonville Children’s Commission, the City of Jacksonville, and the United Way, Daniel provides the housing, support and training necessary to safely transition these teens to living independently as productive members of our community.

The staff of Daniel’s Project Prepare Program helps approximately 60 homeless youth each year by providing temporary residence in our twelve unit efficiency apartment complex or helping them secure other low-cost housing. Once these critical needs are met, the Daniel team teaches program participants enduring life skills including personal health and hygiene, how to obtain and maintain safe housing, how to comparative shop, how to make transportation arrangements, social skills, basic finance skills, banking and budgeting, job search skills, and employment stabilization.

Since many teens find themselves homeless due to unstable home environments, Daniel also provides counseling and positive behavior reinforcement to help them learn new coping skills on their path to future self-sufficiency. Daniel case managers act as personal coaches, helping Project Prepare participants build confidence and resilience through their support and by teaching them how to access community resources when they need them. A licensed mental health professional coordinates group and individual counseling to address deeper traumatic issues or other barriers to success.

Upon completing the program, youth are connected with supporting community resources for education, employment, health care, long-term residence, and spiritual support to ensure their long-term success beyond the safe boundaries of the program. With a mission of ensuring that no child enters adulthood without the tools and knowledge vital to success, Daniel safely transitions homeless youth to a life of independence and self-sufficiency.

Who We Help: Youth and young adults, aged 16 through 21, who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness, may request enrollment directly or be referred by a school, community agency, or government program.

Contact: For more information regarding the Project Prepare program, please contact our Project Prepare team at 296-1055 extension 3003 or via email at projectprepare@danielkids.org.

 

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