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Street Parking
Street Outreach

Their Needs Come First

Our Ark is not a typical homeless outreach organization. Our Ark was founded two years ago specifically to help street kids who were not being served well elsewhere. “Our young people need to feel the love of home and to feel the love of caring and hope,” the Founder said. “So that’s what we want to bring towards them.” Her approach diverges from

1) meeting each client wherever he/she is at; 
2) develop a trusting supportive relationship with him/her; 
3) identify his/her multiple needs (i.e. physical, mental, social, financial, educational, vocational, spiritual, etc); 
4) seeing the bigger picture, even if he/she does not (i.e. his/her potential and obstacles); 
5) leveraging available resources and seeking out innovative solutions through advocacy and partnerships.

in the way, volunteers and staff build relationships with youth. She favors creating closer, familial-like relationships that stretch the boundaries of what some others consider best practices.

Team Member Experiences

Our Team's Inspiring Journey at Our Ark

Join Our Community Journey. Discover how Our Ark, through street outreach and unwavering support, transforms the lives of homeless youth and young adults. Watch the video to see our team's impact in action.

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Team Member Experiences

Our Team's Inspiring Journey at Our Ark

Outreach team members are trained to reach out to homeless youth in Thurston County for the purpose of distributing gallon snack bags, medical and hygiene supplies, resource information, and other survival essentials.  

Team members work on an assigned schedule to provide consistency to our outreach program and build trust with those in need. Team members commit to 4-12 hours per month with a minimum of one weekly shift.  

 

Volunteer outreach creates an important face-to-face contact with the people we serve, and the program goes wherever there is need in Thurston County. 

Trauma and Life on the Streets

Supporting Trauma Recovery on the Streets

Individuals living on the streets have often experienced trauma, whether it occurred before their homelessness, or as a result of it. Our street outreach members listen when a youth discloses trauma, modeling compassion, empathy, and understanding. When appropriate, our policy is to refer individuals to trauma response resources that best fit the situation, which may be medical facilities, mental health services, law enforcement, or other specialized organizations. Our team will follow-up with these individuals to stay connected and address their needs. 

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Building Community

Uniting for Change: Embracing Diversity, Creating Impact

Our Ark team members are from all age groups and backgrounds, including students, veterans, retires, community groups, church congregations, and businesses. This diversity helps us to provide the best community-centered services possible. As we expand our outreach and other services, we have a variety of opportunities for groups and individuals to join our mission. Group projects in collaboration with our outreach teams are an excellent way to educate the community on the occurrence of youth homelessness. Not only can you make a difference as a volunteer, you can BE the difference.  

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It is a Way of Life

“Sometimes it's easy to walk by because we know we can't change someone's whole life in a single afternoon. But what we fail to realize it that simple kindness can go a long way toward encouraging someone who is stuck in a desolate place.”
― Mike Yankoski

Unveiling the Hidden Struggle:

Empowering Homeless Youth through Outreach

Homeless youth are often invisible. And many are afraid to come out of the shadows. Our experienced outreach team searches them out. Our Ark Street Outreach Team drives and walks the streets seeking out youth who have nowhere to call home.

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