AHO offers a unique youth friendly, youth–led program model where each young person’s personal goals and needs are addressed individually. Youth are provided a “safety net” of comprehensive support through the 86-member AHO Alliance for Youth service partner network and an adult ally to help ensure success in reaching their goals. Paid leadership opportunities and ways to use their talents to give back are also provided.
At AHO, the first step is to call for help.
Within 24 to 48 hours following the call, youth are met in a friendly non-stigmatizing place like a café, library, park in the community that is convenient for them. At the initial meeting each youth, with the support of an adult ally coach, work together to create a plan which prioritizes the key resources they want, how AHO can help, along with next steps and timelines for completion. As such, each youth is creating their own program for success, and AHO supports them in accessing the resources and providing the emotional support they need to build a strong foundation.
AHO respects the young people it serves as young adults.
As such, AHO does not case manage them, but rather works as a partner with them on their path to becoming independent, contributing adults. Each youth takes the lead in what they need support for, and AHO steps in to ensure they receive the support they need to be successful in their transition. The youth that are most successful, follow through on the action steps they create for themselves, stay in communication with their adult ally coach with updates and changes so that any issues that come up can be handled quickly and efficiently.
Referrals come from many different sources; the youth themselves, neighbors, teachers and others that know of a youth in need, and/or one of AHO’s 96 Alliance for Youth partners. Regardless of how the referral comes, all youth need to make the call for help themselves. This process insures that the youth is invested in moving forward from their current circumstances, and willing to take that important, albeit, very difficult first step – calling for help.