This year, SLC has partnered with Evanston’s James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy to help Evanston’s Homeless Youth.

Your donation of $10 OR a $10 Subway gift card can help teens and young adults purchase a healthy meal.

Below is the story of one of the youths who has sought help at the Moran Center.

David’s* wants in life are respectable:

Complete his high school education and find a job that pays a living wage so that he can put a roof over his head and food on his table.

But his path to that goal has been rough.

Four years ago – at age 15 – he came to the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy in Evanston and wanted to enroll in high school. No one is quite sure where he had been living before connecting with the organization that provides legal and social work services to Evanston youth through age 21 and their families. His mother said he had been living with his grandmother. His grandmother said he had been living with his father. And David’s father said his son had been living with his mother. There were no documents to show where he may have attended junior high school. David didn’t know his ABC’s, but his desire to be in school and learn and to play a sport was huge.

He started on the right path. David attended Evanston Township High School and got the help he needed to begin catching up on his schoolwork. He even got to be part of a team. After his needs were further assessed, a bus took him to a therapeutic day school in Des Plaines that was able to provide him with the support he needed. But the bus didn’t have a set place to pick David up everyday.

David was homeless.

His father lived outside of Illinois. He grandmother’s home was on the Southside of Chicago. He did not get along with this mother and stepfather; even if he did, they also lived in the southern part of Chicagoland. Ultimately, 2 ½ years after he started down this new road to better himself and at age 18 David was arrested on a domestic charge after a fight with a stepfather he did not get along with.

David, though, still has his goal in sight and the Moran Center is still helping him work toward that diploma and self-sufficiency. Now 19, David has been back in the Evanston community for a year. He is holding down two jobs and his desire to be in school is just as big as ever. David has been working with a tutor one-on-one to acquire the skills he needs to earn that high school diploma. But the path continues to be rocky for David.
He is still homeless.

He is one of about 15 homeless youth the Moran Center is working with at any given time. The Center serves more than 200 integrated legal and social work clients annually. A staggering number of youth in our community are at risk for homelessness. In Evanston’s School Districts #202 and #65, more than 600 youth are considered homeless because they do not have a permanent address. They often may be “couch surfing” from house to house, but in some cases youth like David do not even have a couch to crash on, or a meal to eat.

We can help.

Your donation of $10 OR a $10 Subway gift card can help teens and young adults purchase a healthy meal.

Please bring your donation to Celeste in the Front Office.

To learn more about the James B. Moran Center visit: moran-center.org

* David’s name has been changed to protect his identity.