Homeless Youth Recieve Support from Nordson

By Robin McGovern
(Trenton, NJ)  Anchor House, Inc. is proud to announce that the Nordson Foundation has awarded a $4,000 grant to support the Runaway and Homeless Youth Job Preparation Project. This project will benefit youth and young adults participating in the Anchorage Transitional Living Program, Anchor Line Supportive Housing, and Anchor Link Street Outreach programs in need of assistance in expanding their job readiness and development skills.
The Nordson Foundation has provided grants to Anchor House Inc. the last two years, and the corporate site in Robbinsville has also supported riders on the annual Ride for Runaways. This year’s grant will allow youth to continue to work one on one with life skills counselors to improve their skills on applying for jobs, creating resumes, interviewing, job searches, as well as assistance with transportation to interviews and purchasing of proper interview attire and bus passes  Group work will include career development workshops and job exploration.
Anchor House Inc. seeks to improve the lives of the underserved homeless youth population, ages 18 through 21. The majority of the youth have left difficult family situations to escape alcohol and drug abuse, neglect, physical and sexual abuse, or drug or gang violence. They often couch surf with relatives and friends, moving from place to place, and often end up on the streets. The youth’s options for finding employment and safe, affordable housing are limited. Most lack family support systems, and need the support system that Anchor House offers.
The need for job readiness and development programs is great. While New Jersey’s current unemployment rate is 9.5%; Trenton’s current unemployment rate is 13.1%, and the unemployment rate for teenagers 16 to 19 years of age is 25%. Unlike most other counties, Mercer saw an increase in its juvenile arrest rate. Statistics for Trenton show risky behavior has increased in the youth population, and there is a high rate of dating violence, physical fights, increased alcohol, cigarette and drug use, as well as rising deaths by accident, homicide and suicide. According to Kids Count, “a startling number of New Jersey youth age 18 to 24 is not working, not attending school, and has no degree beyond high school. These are the state’s idle young, or “disconnected youth,” in social science parlance." Nearly the same number of young adults, 12% is living at or below the federal poverty level. It is also significant that New Jersey, one of the wealthiest states in the nation, has nearly the same proportion of disconnected youth as the nation as a whole, 13% vs. 15%.
For more information, please contact Kim McNear at [email protected]