On behalf of the board of TambraPlace, this holiday newsletter is a big thank you to donors and community supporters for supporting the goals of our youth. Our agency has a goal to raise $315,000 over the next two years to keep our doors open and build another home to assist unaccompanied homeless youth.
As the Co-Founder and President of TambraPlace, I am humbled and grateful for the light and faith this community has shone on the issue of unaccompanied youth in our community. Sadly, the impacts of drug addictions caused by; fentanyl, methamphetamine, heroin, alcohol, and other environmental adversities negatively impact youth living in these environments and put a strain on an overburdened social service system. As a Social Worker, having conversations with youth over the years led to the vision of a haven for youth needing a safe home.
In 2017, the mission of our Interfaith Operation Committee (IOC ) was to mobilize our community and research solutions. The IOC kept a promise and developed a blueprint to answer the cries of youth who bravely told their stories.
Present day, our working board and staff seek to provide a haven for resilient unaccompanied youth. Our homes are based on a philosophy of building our residents’ self-efficacy and an opportunity to heal from their past trauma(s). Our first home, owned by Community Presbyterian Church, will be celebrating its 3rd Holiday Season. Our Young Mens Home, Stonehouse, which opened in June 2023 will be celebrating its 1st Holiday season.
TambraPlace has housed eight young women over 3 years, and 1 young man since June of 2023. In 2022, our agency expanded our mission to include youth who are not seeking housing but need community support. Our agency has assisted over 39 youths over the past 24 months. Through collaboration and sponsors from community entities, we can provide graduating unaccompanied youth with resources to finish high school. TambraPlace’s outreach mission supports unaccompanied youth who are couch surfing. We meet youth where they are, by providing timely supportive guidance. TambraPlace assists with monetary support for groceries, paying for school fees, and assistance to get to a safe place.
Our interventions are meant to be a hand-up for youth, as we provide assistance and build trust. Most unaccompanied youths have been raising themselves, and suffer from PTSD due to abuse, neglect, or abandonment. Over time, under the roof of TambraPlace, we seek to build trust and provide guidance, in a thoughtful and understanding way. Our services are free and supported by private grants, sponsored events, and donations.
We are proud to announce two of our youth will be graduating with their Associate's degree this Spring! We also have a youth that will be graduating high school and attending community college. All residents can stay until age 24 and be mentored for life! Our newest resident was living unsheltered, abandoned, and aged out of foster care. This youth will be applying to attend college in the Fall. Our collaboration with community entities has been the foundation of providing a haven and therapeutic environment. As you can imagine despite our youth accomplishments, scars and burdens remain. TambraPlace has faith and hope in every youth and seeks to help each youth find their path. We are also thankful to our mental health collaborators who assist in providing services to our youth.