Advocates for Children’s Newest Program Fills a Great Need

Advocates for Children’s independent youth housing program is expanding in 2021. The RISE program will be able to meet increased needs for housing and provide more extensive case management for clients. Supplementary financial support received through the CARES Act provided Advocates with the opportunity to hire additional case managers, increasing the program’s client capacity. 

RISE is a rapid re-housing program that serves youth ages 18-24 living in homelessness. In addition to placing youth and their families into permanent housing, RISE also provides rental, transportation, and childcare financial assistance. Finally, RISE clients receive independent living skills and job readiness training. 

RISE, which stands for Resilience, Independence, Success, and Empowerment, was developed so that Advocates could continue to serve abused and neglected youth even after they “age out” of child welfare programs. RISE provides the support and care that many youths need to become empowered adults.

“We are so excited to grow as a program and to serve more people in need,” says Rhonda Hall, Director of Residential Services. When asked about what resources the program still needs, Ms. Hall listed a variety of household items, including cleaning tools, dishware, cookware, small appliances—particularly microwaves, bedding, air mattresses, and more. 

“There are so many things that we take for granted and view as necessities that our clients just don’t have when they come to us. Something as simple as a broom and dustpan is instrumental to keeping a hygienic home, but it falls lower on the priority list when you don’t have a bed to sleep in or anything to cook with.”

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When asked about how community members could contribute to the RISE program, Renee Shields, Director of Development, stated that item donations could be dropped off directly at the Administrative Building or purchased on Amazon via Advocates for Children’s RISE Wishlist.

 Alternatively, people can sign up for the organization’s monthly giving program, Advocates 360. “We know that times have been tough for many, which is why Advocates 360 is an excellent alternative,” says Shields. “When you sign up for the program, you agree to give $30 a month, which adds up to $360 in a 12-month period. While it may not feel like a lot in the moment, monthly giving is so important—especially to our families. $360 buys a family exiting homelessness a basic necessities welcome home package.” 

You can sign up for Advocates 360 at

Advocates for Children is a non-profit organization that is committed to the prevention and treatment of child abuse and neglect. Founded as a children’s shelter in 1983, Advocates for Children has since expanded and now includes eight different programs across eleven counties. 

The mission of the organization is “To strengthen our community of families by offering safety, comfort and hope to children and preventing child abuse in all its forms.” If you would like to learn more about Advocates for Children or how to get involved in these upcoming events, contact Renee Shields, Development Director, at

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