In this issue: Youth In Need contributes to national toolkit on youth homelessness; staff celebrate at YIN-Fest; and YPG wraps up trivia night.

Youth In Need Part of National Toolkit to Better Serve Youth Experiencing Homelessness

“Every year, 4.2 million youth and young adults experience homelessness on their own—700,000 are ages 13 to 17, and 3.5 million are young adults ages 18 to 25,” so begins a new publication from the National Network for Youth (NN4Y) focused on collecting resources that can help youth service agencies better serve these young people and help them avoid or quickly exit homelessness.

It’s also a publication that features Youth In Need and the agency’s work to foster diversity, equity and inclusion. The national toolkit cited Youth In Need’s investment in staff training, changes to hiring practices and our intense racial equity audit.

Erin Strohbehn, Youth In Need’s Senior Director of Youth Programs, Quality, contributed to the toolkit, discussing how biases and inequities contribute to the disparities in systems and programs that should be helping youth.

“We can’t show that we care about [our clients and staff] if we aren’t showing that we care about people of color, people of all abilities,” Strohbehn said. “It’s important that we show our young people that they matter so that they can take that with them into adulthood.”

To learn more, watch the YouTube webinar or download the toolkit.

YIN-Fest Celebrates Staff, Recognizes Service Anniversaries

Youth In Need held YIN-Fest, its annual staff appreciation event, last week for the first time since the pandemic began. After two long years of online meetings and virtual greetings, nearly 300 staff from all of our locations enjoyed a beautiful day #YINThisTogether at 370 Lakeside Park. Staff gathered to relax, dance, eat, visit, play and celebrate all that it means to be a YINner. Among the celebrations were the annual service anniversary awards and the T-shirt competition—congratulations to the Accounting team! (A huge thanks to the amazing Human Resources Department who spends countless hours organizing, planning and executing a stellar event to make staff feel appreciated!)

Thank You for Trivia Night Support

Thanks to everyone who supported the Young Professionals Group’s annual Trivia Night last week! Sixteen tables battled it out for bragging rights and raised more than $4,000 along the way. Thanks to Presenting Sponsor Mia Rose Holdings and Event Sponsors Midland States Bank and Rosemann & Associates for their support. Another round of thanks to members of the St. Charles Ancient Order of Hibernians for volunteering their time at the event.