COLUMBUS (WCMH) – A group of local leaders is working to raise awareness about youth homelessness.
Leadership Columbus‘ Community Impact Project Team from the Class of 2019 is helping organize the efforts. One of the organizations they are working with is Star House which is dedicated to helping people ages 14-24 dealing with homelessness.
“It gives me a lot of hope that Columbus is becoming more aware of this need that has been hidden for so long,” said Ann Bischoff, Star House CEO.
According to Bischoff, there are about 3,000 people ages 14-24 in central Ohio who are homeless. Jamaka Garrett is one of those people.
“It’s difficult to really just manage,” Garrett said.
She’s 19 and has faced more challenges than many have in a lifetime. She spent the first 12 years of her life in and out of foster care and now she’s homeless. She’s currently staying at Star House with her 3-year-old son.
“It’s better for him to be somewhere safe and I know he’s gonna be safe and he can wake up and be like oh I’m not outside in the cold or where we gonna go today mommy,” she said.
The group behind the campaign created the hashtag, #CBUSEEUS. On Wednesday they put door hangers with information about their campaign on cars around Columbus.
The goal is to make more people aware of the problem then eventually get them to help. Organizers say about 3,000 door hangers were distributed and another 5,000 are being printed.