There is no better time to pause and say thank you to all of the staff, volunteers, donors, family and friends that have helped get us to this moment. Thank you!! We wish you and your families a happy holiday season!
The Flood of 2016 temporarily suspended our After School Educational Program, but it did not suspend the enthusiasm of our youth to excel in school. Youth who elect to participate in the program agree to allow us access to their electronic school profile and grades. With this access, we know when they have tests, homework assignments, or projects due, and can make sure that they have the supplies and study time they need to succeed. We developed an incentive program to encourage youth to attend school regularly, complete homework and make good grades. Their hard work is paying off! Congratulations Justin & Quinlisha on your excellent start to the school year!!
Many of our 70805 youth were flooded and lost everything. Thanks to generous donors, we were able to ensure that all of our youth had school supplies and uniforms to begin school…again.
One of our youth was working at Office Depot when the storm hit Baton Rouge. When the flooding occurred, his boss asked him to work additional hours to serve the people in need. He gladly agreed, and for the first time he has a personal savings account of $1,000. Congrats on a job well done!
Recently, HP Serve partnered with law enforcement to rescue a fourteen-year-old girl being trafficked in Baton Rouge. She was rescued from a local hotel where three adults had sold her for commercial sex acts. She was taken to a local detention center until the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) could locate a placement for her. Law enforcement called HP Serve and asked us to meet with the young girl while she was in detention. We took her crayons and several of those adult coloring books that are so popular now. Her eyes filled with tears when we gave them to her saying, “Now I have something. I was the only one here with nothing, and now I have something.” She began to open up to HP Serve staff, sharing her story about her predators. She was transferred to DCFS where we were able to give her a bright pink weighted blanket. (Weighted blankets are one of the supplies we keep on hand to comfort victims as they are proven to be a powerful tool in decreasing anxiety and increasing self-control.) Through a partnership with an anonymous non-profit and DCFS, we secured a private plane to fly her safely back to her home. Her predators are now in custody and being charged with human sexual trafficking. This rescue could not have happened without extensive collaboration among DCFS, law enforcement, FBI, Juvenile Services, HP Serve and the anonymous non-profit. Find out more about how we collaborate with partners in the blog “The Synergy of Collaboration.”
Everyday we see youth from difficult family and life circumstances who want better for their lives but have no guidance to get there. This is one of our youth. He came from a large family. His father was in and out of jail and his mom had also done time but was now working two jobs to provide for their family. His four brothers were all in and out of jail; one of his sisters was a dropout teen mom; the other was in school but always truant.
When this youth first came to HP Serve, he was a seventeen-year old high-school dropout and was on probation after serving time for various charges. He called HP Serve for an appointment and walked 2.5 miles to meet with us. We first helped him get back into school. His family did not have a car, so we provided a bicycle for him to ride to work at McDonalds. He saved $300 to pay for his driver’s training class and got his driver’s license. Through community partners, HP Serve provided him a donated vehicle while he paid the insurance. HP Serve helped him connect with several industry partners to explore career paths. When he turned eighteen, he graduated and went to work with an industry partner at $10.50/hour. Another community partner provided him a low-interest auto loan allowing him to purchase his own vehicle, which helped him to acquire additional training and increase his pay. HP Serve has guided him throughout this journey and with the help of partners like you, he is now earning $17.50/hour and his future is changed forever.
Recently HP Serve was able to help a homeless youth because of YOU. We helped a female youth in one of our programs find a job that she is very excited about! She will be working in an assisted living facility helping the elderly. Before she could begin, she needed scrubs, tennis shoes and other clothing she could not afford. We emailed some of our volunteers and within 2 days we received 8 scrubs, 3 pairs of tennis shoes, long sleeve shirts, and a pack of socks! She started February 5th.
The focus of HP Serve is to help youth develop their potential.
This summer the fifteen youth interns pictured here graduated
from the 2015 Summer Youth Development Program. These
youth participated in activities that focused on character,
leadership, spiritual and life skills development, as well as career
awareness. After graduation, the interns were surprised with $40
gift cards for Academy Sports and Outdoors. Many purchased new
backpacks for the upcoming school year.
Thank you so much for everything that you do and for your heart to serve!
We couldn’t do this without your help!
For youth who are in foster care or have experienced homelessness, Christmas is often a difficult time. Thanks to everyone who made Christmas for our Anchor House youth a great holiday, from the numerous volunteers and Healing Place Outreach Team who donated gifts and meals to Charles & Kary Landreneau who opened their home to provide our youth a traditional Christmas day in a family setting. Regardless of what youth may have experienced before, this Christmas was great. The youth used donated gift cards to shop at Plato’s Closet, had a pre-Christmas dinner at Chili’s and even helped pack Christmas bags for inmates in Angola. Thanks to each of you who made this holiday special and provided our youth with lifelong memories.