Streetwork – ELEM’s Outreach Vans

 

Every night, thousands of youth and young adults wander public parks, city squares, entertainment centers and hideouts. Many of them have dropped out of educational or therapeutic frameworks. At times, it is simply youth who are bored or lack leisure activities and can be found on the streets looking to relieve boredom. In the absence of support and assistance, these youth suffer from environmental, social, and psychological neglect and may deteriorate to drug and alcohol abuse, involvement in anti-social behavior and self-harm.

 

ELEM’s “Outreach Vans- an address on the streets” have been operating since 1996 and provide an immediate response out in the field to youth and young adults in situations of risk, distress, and detachment:

  • The van’s staff meet the youth on their turf, on the street at night, and serve as an address and as significant adult figures in the lives of the youth.
  • The van’s staff connect with the youth, with the goal of providing them access to services and appropriate treatment, in order to return back to a life track in a normative and supportive framework.
  • The van is adapted to be used for individual meetings with youth. They include an intimate therapeutic seating area, hot drinks, refreshments, telephone, informational pages, contraceptives, and more. The staff is comprised of a team of professionals and volunteers who provide the youth and young adults assistance through warm and open meetings.

 

8,159 youth received assistance in 2015

 

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