I Could Not Imagine My Life Without It

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Youth Go

At Youth Go and Friendship Place, people find a place they can be themselves and a second family.

Contributors: Kelly Hicks, Executive Director at Youth Go and Lori Hill, Executive Director at Friendship Place

On Wednesday, July 9th from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m., United Way Fox Cities is hosting an educational tour starting at Youth Go (213 Nicolet Blvd., Neenah) and ending at Friendship Place (220 N. Commercial St., Neenah). Learn more about how United Way is working in the community to improve the education, health and socialization of youth and adults in our community through these nonprofits. Sign-up for the United Way Experience Tour by sending an e-mail to our Resource Development team.

To get a sneak peek of the programs you will learn about on the tour, keep reading…

Youth Go provides a safe and supportive environment for youth in grades 5-12 in Neenah and Menasha. Many of the youth we serve describe themselves as "alone."  They feel that they have few people in their lives that they can turn to. They get discouraged frequently, are easily influenced and are seeking acceptance. Youth Go gives them outlets to express themselves, positive and healthy adult role models, a connection to their community and a second home where they can be themselves while working through the challenges of adolescence. One former participant writes, "Youth Go holds a special place in my heart. If I ever need advice or an adult's perspective on a problem I have, I feel comfortable talking to any of the staff at Youth Go about it. I am truly grateful for having a place like this to go to and could not imagine my life without it."

Friendship Place is a non-profit social, educational and recreational outreach program for people with mental illness. Since our beginnings in 1991, the principal goal of Friendship Place (FP) has been to provide programming to minimize isolation of adults with mental illness and encourage them to be more active, contributing members of our communities. We provide supplemental services to the existing mental health service network. Although most of our members receive traditional mental health services, a significant amount of members engage in unhealthy behaviors from poor diet and exercise practices, to poor financial decision making, and lack of social skills that traditional services do not have the time and resources to address. Lifestyle-related disorders are costly to our community. Recent research shows that changes in lifestyle behaviors can have a significant impact on an individual's overall mental and physical well-being. FP takes an active role in developing programs to specifically address this problem.