Early in 2023, Eloise from a Target in North St. Paul, reached out to Avenues asking if her team could help support youth in our community that are experiencing homelessness. After a couple of emails this incredible team got to work and just recently delivered about 85% of the items we include in gift baskets (including the laundry basket itself) for more than 50 young people!
The “welcome basket” is the first thing a young person receives when entering Avenues. It contains all the basics they will need, and a few extras. From every full-sized hygiene produce they require, water bottles, bedding, headphones, ear plugs, towels, and a few extra fun in-betweens. The first day a youth joins an Avenues program, whether in emergency shelter or our temporary housing program, it can be a stressful experience. Combined with program staff warmth, these welcome baskets let the young person know that when they are with us at Avenues, they are HOME.
Avenues for Youth could not do this kind of work without partners like Target and leaders like Eloise. We cannot say thank you enough.