February 2, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THE NORTHERN LIGHTHOUSE, INC. RECEIVES GRANT TO START AROOSTOOK COUNTY’S
FIRST EMERGENCY SHELTER FOR HOMELESS YOUTH
TNLH Expands Services for Most Vulnerable Youth Just in Time for Winter
PRESQUE ISLE, ME – The Northern Lighthouse, Inc. (TNLH) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a grant to open an Emergency Youth Homeless Shelter. TNLH will start a co-ed emergency shelter to provide safe housing to youth ages 10-17. This emergency shelter will be located in Mars Hill, Maine, next to its existing Residential program.
Because of this funding, TNLH now has the opportunity to provide emergency shelter and support services to runaway and homeless youth who come from both rural and urban locations across Maine. The TNLH emergency shelter will provide safe housing to runaway and homeless youth primarily located in Aroostook County, but it will also be able to provide emergency shelter services to youth identified as homeless in all other counties across the state, or to those from other shelters in Maine that are full. This program will provide a solution to the gap of needed services for homeless youth in Aroostook County, and throughout the state.
Without access to emergency shelter services, children and teens in Aroostook County are forced to access these services outside of their communities. Some youth may be unable to access services elsewhere due to other shelters being full and therefore have a higher risk of getting in unsafe living situations, couch surfing, and remaining homeless. Maine only has three other homeless shelters that are specifically for homeless youth. The nearest emergency shelter, the Shaw House in Bangor, is over a 2 hour or 145 mile drive away from Mars Hill. The TNLH emergency shelter will be the first and only emergency shelter for homeless youth in Aroostook County.
“We are very excited to begin offering this support to the youth of our community who may be experiencing homelessness,” said Blake Hatt, Chief Operations Officer at TNLH. He continued, “Our goal will be to help link youth with resources to ensure they have safe and stable housing, natural supports, and access to any other services they may need.”
As the temperatures have fallen drastically in recent weeks, TNLH is working diligently to finish construction and open their doors to the youth in our community. While the current date opening has not been set, TNLH is looking to open their doors next month.
TNLH will provide safe emergency shelter, case management, food and clothing, and child and family mediation through this program. It will also provide referrals for health care, referral partnerships throughout the community, and referrals and/or access to Home and Community Based Treatment, Substance Use Treatment, and Outpatient Therapy if needed. TNLH will seek to reunite youth with their families and/or natural supports.
The emergency shelter in Mars Hill will be in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. TNLH will meet the needs of homeless youth and will collaborate with several Maine-based organizations in an effort to reduce the risk of youth homelessness in Maine, and to give youth opportunities that will improve their lives.
The Northern Lighthouse, Inc. provides services to children, adults, and families across Maine. TNLH is excited about this new opportunity to help end youth homelessness in Maine. For more information about TNLH services, call (207) 540-1522 or visit their website at www.tnlh.org.
# # #
The Northern Lighthouse, Inc. provides substance use services, outpatient therapy and case management for children, families, and adults, as well as community skill building and intensive residential support services for youth and young adults ages 8 to 21. Established in 2001, we provide exceptional care for adults and children with mental health and behavioral disabilities in 4 locations throughout Aroostook County. In 2021, we served over 564 individuals and families. We provide services to support individuals and families, build self-confidence and self-esteem, personal responsibility, as well as skill development. We employ 71 staff who assist families and children with varying disabilities, HCT, Case Management, Residential Treatment, Outpatient therapy, and Section 28 Services. Staff encourages parents and family members to make informed choices regarding their children, by providing education geared towards the specific challenges that they face. The Northern Lighthouse, Inc. team continues to ensure a nondiscriminatory and respectful setting inclusive of culture, social, and religious differences. We serve on a referral basis including self-referral and we accept most insurances.
For more information, please visit tnlh.org or contact Blake Hatt, Chief Operations Officer, at (207) 540-1522 ext. 204, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.