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Renovation of the Drop-In Center and Vault

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This fall, we raised money to renovate our Drop-In Center and the large, unused vault behind the Drop-In Center. Thanks to a group of generous donors, we raised $226,115 for the renovation – to make sure our doors are open for the next youth who needs help.

Read below to learn more about the plan, process and timeline of the renovation over the next year and thank you for being part of our village of believers!

Creating Seamless Services for Spectrum Youth

The Drop-In Center provides hot meals, fresh clothes, showers, laundry, and one-on-one support to teens and young adults who are facing homelessness and other challenges.

Many of the youth we serve have a history of trauma and don’t trust adults. Our staff work hard to build trusting relationships with the youth who come into Drop-In. Often these youth don’t feel comfortable accessing our other programs with unfamiliar adults.

As Leslie Ferrer, Spectrum’s clinical director, recently said, “Many youth at Drop-In have been through a lot—they may have been abused, went through foster care, lived with dysfunctional families, etc. Drop-In is often the only place where they truly feel safe. Walking to another building for other services can be really hard for them. Having youth meet counselors in a space where they already feel safe is the best way to begin to address issues of trauma, depression, anxiety, and substance use.”

The Vault

The vault is a large, unused, windowless room (the size of a racquetball court) behind the Drop-In Center. Before Spectrum, it was used to store furs.

We would like to turn the empty vault into usable space for counselors, case managers, tutors and mentors to meet with youth that come to the Drop-In Center. The vault will yield two floors of usable space, totaling 1,500 square feet.

The Renovation

The renovation will take about four months and be completed in two stages, so that the disruption to youth and staff is minimal. Renovating the Drop-In Center and vault will:

  • Convert the Vault into two floors and 1500 square feet of useable space for counselors, mentors, case managers, and tutors to meet one-on-one with youth.
  • Expand and relocate the kitchen to make it easier to serve meals for 20-35 people. (Right now, our kitchen is like one you’d find in a small apartment and cooking for so many is a challenge).
  • Add a computer library separate from the main room so youth can focus while they work.
  • Give youth a bigger range of options for how to use the space based on how they are feeling that day, such as sitting in a window with a friend, chatting in a group, playing a game at a table, or even cozying up in the quiet nook.
  • Make sure the Drop-In Center’s doors are open for youth who need help this year.

Renovating the Drop-In space will create more room for youth, along with a larger kitchen, an additional shower, a library, a quiet nook, and a meeting room. The vault renovation will create meeting spaces for our mental health counselors, life skills coaches, and tutors to meet with youth.

How YOU Can Give

You can make the Drop-In Center more welcoming and warm for youth when they walk through that door—all while making sure our kids get all of the help they need where they feel safest. Will you help make the path a little easier for our youth by making a gift today?

You can give online here AND if you give before December 31st, 2019, your gift will be doubled by a group of generous donors that have pledged to match donations.

Questions?

Contact Sarah Woodard, Director of Development, at  swoodard@spectrumvt.org or (802) 864-7423 x350

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