Happy 2017! …


A Look Back on 2016 for NRS

Photo courtesy of Armando Meschkat (Flickr)

Happy 2017!  Before we get too much further into the new year, let’s revisit important 2016 moments that supported the National Runaway Safeline (NRS) in handling 72,046 calls and making online connections through 6,586 crisis emails, 15,440 live chats and 3,336 forum postings, as well as connections with youth who participated in our Let’s Talk:  Runaway Prevention Curriculum (RPC). 

Washington DC and NRS

Photo courtesy of John Simm (Flickr)

January: NRS presented in Washington, D.C. to the Department of Justice, the Department of Education, Family Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) leadership and other federal agencies about NRS’ services and programs, including “Let’s Talk” and about our recent research on Trends of Youth in Crisis.

February: NRS hosted its official Open House to welcome the community to its new home at 3141 B N. Lincoln.  NRS’ new headquarters attracted many VIP guests in 2016, including; Alderman Tom Tunney, Alderman Scott Waguespack, State Senator John Cullerton, Congressional Representative Mike Quigley, Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti and FYSB Commissioner Rafael Lopez.


March:  NRS reported since the launch of the RPC in 2007, over 73,443 (with some duplication) participated either in an individual activity, one or more modules, or in all 14 modules of the curriculum as evidenced by the demographic forms completed and received.  The curriculum is being used in 41 states.  In 2016, the Spanish version of the RPC was updated and made available for free by downloading or ordering at 1800RUNAWAY.org/hablemos-lets-talk-en-espanol.

Becca Bowlin presenting Volunteer of the Year to Rashida Black

NRS Volunteer Coordinator, Becca Bowlin, presenting Volunteer of the Year to Rashida Black

April:  NRS hosted the Volunteer and Community Appreciation event to recognize volunteers and donors that help NRS serve youth in crisis 24/7/365. During the evening, NRS honored Rashida Black as the 2016 Volunteer of the Year.

May: NRS participated in a radio media tour of 17 interviews to release its 2016 Crisis Connection Trend Report. The tour aired on 126 stations reaching 7,699,630 listeners.

June:  The Longest Day of Golf raised over $40,000 for NRS.  Eight golfers combined their passion for their sport and community by playing from dawn to dusk. As the 2016 charity recipient, NRS was able to designate part of the generous contribution for its strategic plan development in 2017, as well as, sponsorship for our 2016 Spirit of Youth benefit.

July:  Through its Home Free program, in conjunction with Greyhound Lines, Inc., NRS provided services to 138 youth in July 2016.

August:  NRS completed the final year of the five-year strategic plan to continue to broaden the delivery platform to better serve our target market, assess and develop collaboration strategies within the youth services sector, increase and diversify funding sources, and develop and implement an effective branding strategy to better connect with a larger percent of our target market.

September:  NRS’ Associate Board bartended at Lakeview Taco Fest and donated $1,249 in tips for crisis services.  NRS’ Associate Board utilizes the time, talent, and networks of young professionals to build visibility and resources.

NRS Executive Director Maureen Blaha with President and CEO of First nonprofit Foundation and 2016 Spirit of Youth Award Recipient, Joe Geiger

NRS Executive Director Maureen Blaha with President and CEO of First nonprofit Foundation and 2016 Spirit of Youth Award Recipient, Joe Geiger

October:  Spirit of Youth 2016, honoring First Nonprofit Foundation, raised over $175,000 to support runaway and at-risk youth.  The annual event introduced a new street fair concept.  Guests enjoyed eating from food trucks and playing games as they supported NRS’ critical services.

Friends Helping Friends | National Runaway Safeline

November:  National Runaway Prevention Month (NRPM) introduced its 2016 theme Friends Helping Friends. NRPM canvassed the country utilizing national partnerships, community activities and online efforts to raise awareness of the runaway and homeless youth crisis and the issues that these young people face, as well as educate Americans about solutions and the role they can play in preventing and ending youth homelessness.

December: Transformational donors contributed over $10,000 and added their names to our donor wall. NRS’ Transformation Campaign continues to raise funds to transform NRS’ new home at 3141 B N. Lincoln with technological advancements and building enhancements.

2016 held poignant moments of NRS’ family coming together to help keep kids be safe and off the streets.  Thank YOU for your ongoing commitment and support of NRS!



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