National Safe Place Network is an innovative program designed to assist youth and families in crisis situations.
The program began in Louisville, Kentucky in 1983 as an outreach effort of the YMCA Center for Youth Alternatives, which is short-term shelter for youth at risk. Its success has prompted the implementation of Project Safe Place in over one hundred cities in the United States.
The program works by creating a network of fire stations that are designated “Safe Places”, and will display the Safe Place logo on their premises. Any youth in trouble knows that he or she can enter a location bearing this sign and request help. A firefighter will provide the youth with a secure place to wait while the Northern California Family Center is contacted and a CRS volunteer will assess the situation and transport if necessary.
National Safe Place Network is not a complex program to implement and the rewards are tremendous. Cities around the country that have adopted this program have found that youth are more likely to ask for help when a Safe Place site is available in their neighborhood. Safe Place has proven to be a viable option for youth that were contemplating leaving home and trying to solve their problems alone.
This program has proven very effective at reaching youth in the early stage of crisis, which gives the youth a much better chance of effecting a lasting resolution to the problem. In 1986, President Reagan recognized National Safe Place Netowrk with a Presidential Citation for Private Sector Initiatives. The program was cited as an excellent example of public and non-profit agencies combining efforts to improve the community. The National League of Cities lauded Project Safe Place as The Most Innovative City Program in 1988.
The ultimate goal for Project Safe Place is to establish one uniform sign – the Safe Place sign – which signals help to the youth everywhere.
Crisis Resolution Services and the Northern California Family Center are proud to provide Safe Place services to the following fire departments and districts:
Contra Costa County