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Happy Birthday to the Youth Opportunity Center!

This year we celebrate the five-year anniversary of the Youth Opportunity Center (YOC)—and we can’t wait to show you how far we’ve come. When Hennepin County created their plan to end homelessness in 2006, part of their solution was “Project Homeless Connect,” a one-day event that connected the homeless and at-risk community to basic needs, […]

“Even If You’re Scared, Don’t Give Up”

It’s the little things that count. When you ask Emily what one of the best things about her new apartment is, she’ll tell you it’s the furniture. “It’s just recent that I moved and I was excited to have my own space and everything just being mine. You really miss out on that when you’re […]

Outreach For A Better Future

The YouthLink Peer Outreach Program is a unique part of what YouthLink does because the five of us who work in the program have experienced homelessness ourselves. We connect young people to resources that they may need on a daily basis. We target youth who are experiencing homelessness or who may know someone who is […]

A Future Filled with Opportunity

In his 23 years, Johnnie has seen a lifetime of struggle. Drugs, weapons, gangs, arrests, jail—these had all been part of Johnnie’s daily life, stretching back to his middle school years. When he was 16, Johnnie decided it would be easier for his grandmother, who raised him, to care for his younger siblings if he […]

Food for the Journey

Carl knows his way around lots of professional kitchens, but he found his calling cooking for YouthLink’s Drop-In Center, where he has presided as chef and kitchen manager for 20 years. Carl has supervised the creation of tens of thousands of meals for young people experiencing homelessness. “Good food is a great way to break down […]

Why Should We Care About Youth Homelessness?

November is national Youth Homelessness Awareness month. Why is focusing on youth homelessness so important? Because 1,800 unaccompanied young people will experience homelessness tonight in Minnesota. At YouthLink, we take pride in sharing the individual stories of the inspirational youth we meet every day, but if you take a look at the bigger picture, you […]

A Journey Toward Hope

Kim and Dan Glienke are changing young people’s lives for the better. But, much like the young people who walk through YouthLink’s doors, their involvement has been a journey. It started with a simple invitation. Dan and Kim first heard about YouthLink through their church, and were invited by a friend to attend a small […]

Words of Wisdom for a New Resident

When young people move out of our supportive housing sites, we know they’re moving on to bigger and better things. For the new residents moving in, we try to make their transition as smooth and welcoming as possible. But one former resident took our jobs to the next level when he left a note in […]

A New Partnership is on the Horizon!

Youth will soon have another opportunity to connect to educational pathways thanks to a new collaboration with the GED Testing Service and the Minnesota Literacy Council to add onsite GED testing and additional GED tutors to YouthLink’s community of resources. 67% of YouthLink clients* identified educational support as critical to their progress, yet many barriers […]