National Safe Place Network (NSPN) is pleased to announce National Safe Place (NSP) Week, March 19-25, 2017 (#NSPWeek2017). This nationally recognized week shines a spotlight on Safe Place®, an outreach an prevention program for youth in crisis. NSP Week serves to recognize the many valued partners who work together to provide immediate help and safety for all young people. It is a time to acknowledge licensed Safe Place agencies, Safe Place locations and community partners, and volunteers. These individuals and groups are the pillars of strength that support the national safety net for youth. To learn more about #NSPWeek2017, please visit: www.nationalsafeplace.org
What is Safe Place?
Safe Place is a national outreach and prevention program for youth in crisis. Over 20,000 locations across the U.S. display the yellow and black Safe Place sign, the universal symbol of help and safety for all young people. Partnering youth-friendly businesses and community organizations, such as fast food restaurants, convenience stores, fire stations, schools, public transportation vehicles and libraries, connect youth in crisis with the local licensed Safe Place agency. Most licensed Safe Place agencies serve youth between the ages of 12 to 17 years old, although some agencies serve younger and older youth.
Safe Place began as an outreach program of the YMCA Shelter House in Louisville, Kentucky in 1983. Access to emergency counseling and shelter for youth was identified as a community need and the YMCA Shelter House found a way to address this issue with the creation of the Safe Place program.
How Safe Place Works
- A young person enters a Safe Place location and asks for help.
- The site employee finds a comfortable place for the youth to wait while they call the local Safe Place licensed agency.
- Within 20-30 minutes or less, a Safe Place representative will arrive to talk with the youth and, if necessary, provide transportation to the shelter for counseling, support, a place to stay or other resources.
- Once at the Safe Place agency, counselors meet with the youth and provide support. Family Agency staff makes sure the youth and their families receive the help and professional services they need.
What is TXT 4 HELP?
A 24-hour, text-for-support service which provides access immediate help and safety for teens. Youth can text the word “SAFE”and their current location (address/city/state) to 69866 and receive a message with the name and address of the closest Safe Place location, as well as the number for the local youth shelter agency. Users also have the option to text interactively with a mental health professional for more help. The service is free, but regular text messaging rates will apply to the user’s phone bill.