Skowhegan Is Home To New Homeless Shelter For Children
If you’re one of the growing number of homeless kids in Maine, the Halcyon House in Skowhegan may be the last stop on the road to a better life. “They know that they need a place to be. They come from the community, they have no other place to be,” said Brandi Farrington, the Director of the Halcyon House.The Halcyon House just recently opened and it’s one of only two shelters in Maine that’s staffed and open 24 hours a day specifically for kids. “If a youth is homeless or at risk of homelessness, we want to make sure that they have a roof over their head and they’re not staying outside somewhere,” Farringotn said.At the Halcyon House, the kids are not asked to leave during the day, but instead they’re taught how to be a productive member of a household. “They work on daily living skills. They work on cooking, they do their own laundry, they make their beds and we have an incentive program built into that.”It’s a 10-bed facility with the typical stay lasting 30 days. Kids who stay here are provided with a case manager and offered help for a variety of issues. “Trying to let people know we’re here, we need some help, we need some support. There’s really no funding streams for shelters.”The staff is teaching the kids skills that will last them a lifetime, but they still need some help. They’re asking for monetary donations as they try to buy a van to transport the kids and they’re badly in need of a new basketball hoop.In one room, the kids who have stayed here are allowed to write their goodbyes and thank yous on the wall. “They walk out with hope after they’ve been here for awhile and have had so much uncertainty around not knowing where they’re going to be and they have a plan in place and they walk out the door with some hope.”If you’d like to help out, call the shelter 873-2136 Ext. 19-05 to find out more.If you are, or know, a child age 10-to-17 who’s homeless, you can call 474-8574 to see about getting a room.