Eddy House — located in Reno — works to end youth homelessness.
Here’s what their nominator had to say about Eddy House:
Eddy House provides a safe space for one of our most vulnerable populations: runaway, homeless, and former foster care youth who often have nowhere else to turn for basic needs, support, and the resources to ensure their safety and well-being under the most difficult circumstances, in Reno’s only homeless youth drop-in center. In just a few short years, Eddy House has done an outstanding job of learning directly from the youth they serve what their needs are, as well as bringing together many stakeholders and service providers to build a strong web of support for their youth. Executive Director Michele Gehr has been a strong advocate for the youth and for the organization, earning incredible support from the community, the private sector and public agencies. Eddy House has done an amazing job of collecting data on the youth they serve, the problem of youth homelessness, and the cost of homelessness to show the community the scope of a problem that too often goes neglected. Eddy House provides a beacon of hope and safety to youth in tragic circumstances beyond their control. They continue to put their efforts into learning what the youth need, and to work towards expanding the support, programs, services, and resources that can help the youth move towards stability, independence, and a brighter future.
One result of Eddy House’s hard work to understand the needs of the youth and the opportunities available to serve them is the agency’s goal of expanding their drop-in center from daytime hours to a 24/7 center – learning that research shows that the adult and youth homeless population should not be sheltered together. This will provide a safe space and shelter during the most vulnerable and dangerous times on the streets for youth who report being victims of violence on a weekly basis. They have done a wonderful job bringing public awareness to the issue of youth homelessness, how they are able to help, and advocating for support of their vision of the future. Most important of all, it’s clear that every staff member, board member, volunteer and supporter of Eddy House believe deeply in the vision and mission of Eddy House, and they truly care for and love each of the youth they serve with a passion for social justice.