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host home program

host homes

Arbor Circle’s Host Home Program is designed to address the housing needs of youth experiencing homelessness by connecting them with caring adults who are willing to provide safe housing and support. This community and volunteer-based approach is available to youth ages 18-20 who are seeking to increase stability in their housing.

The experience of homelessness can be a traumatic one and can have a ripple effect into other areas of an individual’s life, including their work and education. Youth experiencing homelessness often share that the choices they must make in order to survive can be unsafe and compromise their overall health and wellness. Youth on the streets are more likely to be trafficked, exploited, assaulted or coerced by predators, experience unplanned pregnancy, lack access to medical and mental health care, and lack the necessary food and shelter to survive. We believe that youth benefit from living with adult allies through the host home model. Safe and stable housing with positive adult relationships is the beginning of addressing larger life-shaping issues.

Becoming a host is a powerful and unique experience, and far from being easy. The commitment host volunteers make is an intense one, and no less intense than that of a youth who is moving into a host home. Arbor Circle strives to make the hosting process empowering and gratifying for both the youth and the host.

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3300

young people experiencing homelessness in West Michigan every day

Safe and stable housing with positive adult relationships is the beginning of addressing larger life-shaping issues

great host homes are committed to:

  • Caring deeply about the well-being of youth in their community
  • Providing housing and food support for youth in their home until the youth achieves their housing goal
  • Partnering with youth, case managers and mental health providers to address youth-identified goals

to become a host home volunteer:

  • You must be 25 years of age or older
  • You may be of any race, ethnicity, gender, religion or sexual orientation
  • You may be single, married, divorced or living with a partner
  • You must have lived in West Michigan for at least one year
  • You must be able to provide a private bedroom for youth
  • Your home must be safe and in good repair
  • You must be willing for everyone in your home to undergo complete background checks

Host Home Volunteers complete 16 hours of training and receive ongoing support from the program Housing Coordinator, as well as regular Host Volunteer Support Groups.

Learn more about becoming a Host Home Volunteer by contacting Arbor Circle’s Housing Coordinator, Andrea Martin. You can reach Andrea at (616) 451-3001 or amartin@arborcircle.org

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“We’ve found something wonderful in sharing our lives with foster kids, and we are so glad that Arbor Circle has been there to guide us through it all.”

“What I liked most about Arbor Circle is that when I was in need most they were there for me, and helped me stay warm throughout the night when I barely knew them.”

I feel especially good about the work I do each day and having the ability to give back to someone in need.

Arbor Circle has always embraced a diverse workforce, and I love how each individual is accepted and appreciated right where they are in their personal and professional journey.

The support and encouragement from my colleagues and supervisors has been tremendous.This is truly appreciated in our line of work.

Arbor Circle’s greatest strength lies with their incredibly passionate people, and the dynamic relationships shared with clients and co-workers alike. I’m grateful every day for the people I work with, especially for the support we’re able to offer to our clients and to each other.

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