Streetwork's Harlem Center: Welcome

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Carolyn StrudwickAssociate Vice President of the Streetwork Project is often the first to greet homeless youth at the Harlem Drop-In Center.

"It is important that whoever is sitting here creates a sense of warmth, welcoming and safety," Carolyn says, leaning against the brightly colored front desk. "It’s about creating a nurturing environment."

Streetwork’s young clients often come into the center cold and hungry, tired and scared, especially if this is their first visit.

"We ask them if they are okay, that’s the first thing," says Carolyn, "If they seem uneasy, we might say, ‘Do you want me to call a counselor right now? Is there anything I can do?’ We make a connection. That’s the most important thing."

After checking in with Carolyn or another counselor, the next stop is up to the client they can go straight to the showers, stop by the computer lab to check out job postings, or head to a counseling room to speak with a case manager. They are empowered to make their own choices, to make decisions that meet their individual needs with Streetwork’s guidance and compassion, not with judgment.

For most youth, getting a hot plate of food from Michelle’s kitchen is their first priority. "I can’t tell you how many hard-to-reach young people I have engaged through that kitchen!" Carolyn laughs. Once you meet Streetwork’s Food Manager, you will know why.

Next stop: Streetwork's Kitchen.

Streetwork Overview

Harlem Welcome Center
Harlem Center
Streetwork Kitchen
Streetwork Main Lounge
Main Lounge
Streetwork Laundry & Showers
Showers & Laundry
Streetwork Music Room
Music Room
Streetwork Art Center
Art Center
Streetwork Counseling Room
Counseling Room
Streetwork Computer Room
Computer Room
Streetwork Peer Education
Peer Education
Streetwork Wellness Center
Wellness Center
Streetwork Get Involved
Get Involved
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