Youth advocate EJ Velez selflessly shares his own personal experience...Read More
Anchor House, providing a safe haven for youth and families to succeed and thrive
National Runaway Prevention Month partner Anchor House provides shelter, transitional and supportive housing, school outreach services and street outreach to youth, ages 12 to 21, from Mercer County and throughout the state of New Jersey.
When Anchor House was established in 1978, the founders were guided by the analogy of a ship dropping its anchor to keep it safe in the storm. The anchor is supported by links of its chain, which tie to the ship. The founders understood that life’s circumstances can cause the links of a family’s chain to break down, and as such, they created Anchor House to serve as a safe place to rest, wait out the storm and then move on when the crisis is calmed.
Much of Anchor House’s work focuses on helping youth and families begin the process of mending “broken links” and putting the family back together. The organization strives to prevent runaway incidents and youth homelessness, largely through a comprehensive street outreach program. Youth who engage with Anchor House also have access to personal development programs and services that help them become productive members of society.
“We see relationships as being at the center of progress,” said Jay Neiderman, Program Coordinator at Anchor House. “When young people have a healthy and trusting relationship with a concerned adult, they feel equipped to address their issues, and they are hopeful as they create a path forward.”
We were impressed with Anchor House’s street outreach program, Anchor Link, which is designed to reduce youth homelessness. Through this program, youth receive help to resolve issues related to themselves, family, housing and more. Also, they are guided through job searches, resume writing and interviewing. To set them up for success, the Anchor Link team helps youth identify and weigh their educational options. Finally, the program offers a safe place to talk with a counselor without fear of being judged or ignored.
We are proud to have Anchor House as a part of the National Runaway Prevention Month partner community and applaud them for their efforts to help youth feel supported and empowered to enjoy a fulfilling life.
For more information about Anchor House, visit anchorhousenj.org.