Youth Homeless Experience

By Lisa Kaminski; Manager, Community Development

calvaryThis weekend is the 2nd annual Youth Homeless Experience program event offered by Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways in partnership with local organizations that work to address the issue of homelessness in our communities.

There are a number of causes of homelessness, which include substance abuse within the home, mental health issues, economic problems, and residential instability. Homelessness can affect everyone, young and old, men and women, and children also. Statistics state that there are 1.7million young people affected by homelessness in the United States. And 39% of those young people are under 18. Of all of those young people, under 18, almost half of them are 5 years old or younger.

The Youth Homeless Experience program event is held in Auburn, NY, Cayuga County. In partnership with other local community organizations, including Chapel House, Auburn Rotary, the Rescue Mission, and Cayuga Seneca Community Action Agency, Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways offers girls the learn about hunger and homelessness in our communities as they build their own shelter for the night.

Local community leaders will speak about homelessness and hunger and participants will complete activities focusing around these issues. The event will end in the morning with an Oxfam Hunger Banquet breakfast. In addition to those activities girls will take action by providing donated nonperishable food, personal care items, and clothing to local organizations addressing the issues of homelessness and hunger.

New this year, girls will have an opportunity to elevate their “life” status by earning points. These points are accumulated or lost during a game and discussion on real life situations which affect one’s economic status such as getting a raise at work, attending college, the loss of child care for your children, or lack of health insurance.

It is expected that nearly 200 girls will take part in the event.

For more information on this, and other events, visit the Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways website at

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