Whitefish Community Foundation has awarded a grant to Flathead Youth Home in Kalispell to support a new Youth Advocate position. The $36,146 grant was made possible by donors to Whitefish Community Foundation’s Kids Fund, established in 2019 as an initiative to help address child homelessness in the Flathead Valley.

The Youth Advocate will work with each resident to develop short and long-term goals and navigate various opportunities to help ensure their personal success into adulthood. This new position will allow Flathead Youth Home to provide ongoing support and guidance to youth for up to six months after they leave the facility.

Opened in 1997, Flathead Youth Home serves youth from the Flathead Valley and surrounding areas who need a safe, stable and trauma-informed place to live. Nearly all youth who enter the home have experienced significant trauma; including abuse, neglect, and family substance abuse. Typically, these youth have long histories of homelessness and have limited opportunities for family reunification or foster care placement.

In addition to providing a safe and welcoming home, Flathead Youth Home offers support to help establish a sense of normalcy and address mental health, behavioral and emotional challenges. The home has the capacity to house eight youth, and on average serves approximately 70 individuals during a calendar year.