Rare Breed is a central hub that provides immediate access to basic needs and rapid access to community services for homeless and at-risk youth ages 13-24.
Rare Breed uses the drop-in center model to foster a safe, welcoming, low-barrier environment for youth to access crucial services. Rare Breed is conveniently located near public transportation to provide ease of access to Rare Breed and other community resources. Youth homelessness is unique because young people are still developing. Our staff is trained to work with youth to build life skills that will help them go on to lead healthy, independent lives.
Immediate Access to Basic Needs
Youth can access the following basic needs every visit:
- hygiene items
At the center, youth can also access a computer lab and WiFi, nursery for parenting youth, art and music studios, and a workout room.
Shelter and Housing Assistance
Rare Breed is a “front door” in our Continuum of Care—meaning youth can complete a housing assessment with case managers to access the array of shelter and housing assistance programs in our area.
When appropriate, we work with The Children’s Division and other agencies within the Homeless Youth Task Force to coordinate overnight shelter and wraparound services for youth.
Case managers make referrals to a wide variety of community services and help youth with transportation and support to access these services. These services include:
- medical and behavioral healthcare
- dental care
- vision care
- k-12 education
- continuing education
- job training
Life Skill Groups
Our staff is trained to work with youth to build life skills that will help them go on to lead healthy, independent lives. Case managers lead a Life Skill group each day at 3pm. Life Skill topics include:
- anger management
- discovering your skill set
- harm reduction
- healthy relationships
- leases and landlords
- overcoming fear and anxiety
- securing proper IDs
Youth experiencing homelessness are especially vulnerable to criminal victimization, sexual exploitation, labor and sex trafficking, and traumatic stress. Staff is trained to provide services that align with nationally recognized best practices for youth homelessness, including:
- Immediate accessibility
- Individualized, flexible, and choice-based
- Developmentally appropriate for youth
- Culturally competent
- Trauma informed
- Based in the Housing First approach
- Employ Positive Youth Development (PYD) principles
- Emphasize resiliency strategies and family unification (when appropriate)
As a program of The Kitchen, Inc. Rare Breed is an active partner in the Ozarks Alliance to End Homelessness (our Continuum of Care) which serves as our community’s regional planning body for coordinating homeless services and funding. OAEH works on a community-wide level with agencies, advocates, and individuals to ensure that homelessness is rare, brief and non-recurring in Christian, Greene and Webster Counties. In the OAEH, Rare Breed participates in the Homeless Youth Task Force and the Justice Mental Health Collaborative Program to ensure our community’s resources can fill gaps and provide unduplicated services to people experiencing homelessness.
Rare Breed also partners with a wide variety of nonprofit and government agencies to provide services to youth. Case managers remain knowledgeable of community services available to youth and actively work to find new resources for youth.