For runaway and homeless youth, life is a constant state of uncertainty and transition. When a youth is without a safe, natural support system, Arbor Circle is the only place in the community to meet their emergency shelter, counseling and support needs. Without Arbor Circle, homeless, runaway and street youth are more at risk from abuse/neglect, sexual assault, substance use, mental/physical health concerns, school difficulties, physical violence and illegal activities. In our community alone, approximately 2,000 youth experience homelessness in Kent County each year. On any given night around 200 youth in Grand Rapids don’t know where they will sleep.
Arbor Circle provides youth the opportunity to discover their inner strengths, build new skills, and find resources that will help them become fully prepared for adult life. Whether you are passionate about a particular issue, such as homelessness or youth development, or simply want to help our community reach its full potential, we invite you to join us. Here are ways to partner with us:
Make a gift that will help youth discover their strengths and overcome life’s challenges. Our organization cannot meet these challenges without a community of caring and supportive partners like you. For example:
Learn more through a personal conversation, a presentation to your group, or at one of our events. Volunteer as an individual or a group. We can match you to an opportunity based on your interests and group size.
Volunteer by hosting an Around the Table: Dinner and Discussions at The Bridge of Arbor Circle. We invite you to join us in a unique volunteer experience by sharing a family style dinner at The Bridge, a shelter for runaway and homeless youth.
This opportunity is designed for 2-4 people with a couple of options to choose from such as creating and preparing your own menu in our fully-equipped kitchen, or catering a meal from your favorite restaurant.
The Bridge is a 24/7/365 shelter that houses 300 youth annually, so there are certain common items that are always needed. The Bridge is currently in need of the following items and appreciates any support you can provide:
Current Critical Need Items:
- Sturdy backpacks (new or used)
- Sleeping bags (preferably new, but will accept good condition used sleeping bags)
- Tarps (earth tones, not blue)
-Sweatshirts & Sweatpants (all sizes)
- Warm weather jackets and hats
- Backpack/travel size snacks - granola bars/nuts/dried fruit
- Flashlights/Head lamps
-Feminine hygiene products - pads/tampons
-Underwear (all sizes)
-Waterproof winter gloves
-Long Underwear (all sizes)
Wish List items can be dropped off during normal business hours, but please call ahead of time. At this time we cannot accept used items such as clothing, furniture, and mattresses.
Or purchase directly from our wish list on Amazon.com - The Bridge of Arbor Circle
If you have questions regarding shelter needs, or to learn more about how you can help, please contact Arbor Circle at 616.456.6571 or email Janelle Hill.