By Jeremy Silcox
In 2006, the Crisis Shelter moved to its Adam’s Canyon location to better meet the specific needs of kids in crisis. The Crisis Shelter accommodates five youth and primarily serves youth from Teton, North Lincoln and Sublette Counties. At the Crisis Shelter there is a higher staff to youth ratio (2:4) which means we can quickly understand youth issues and more readily make recommendations for further care. The smaller setting allows for greater safety as well as closer supervision.
The Adam’s Canyon Crisis Shelter is able to accept children aged 10-17 years old. Placements are voluntary and can be made for up to 30 days although every effort is made to address the immediate crisis so that the youth may return home or be referred for further services in as timely a manner as possible. Adolescents in need of care can be referred by parents, the schools, law enforcement, Department of Family Services or a child could ask to be placed with parental permission.
Although it may seem like the reasons for placements are obvious as we do take kids who have been misbehaving and getting into trouble, the reasons why these problems are happening can be due to a myriad of factors. Kids do not always know how to ask for help when they are struggling. Oftentimes they act out or put up a tough exterior in order to get attention or act like they don’t care when a situation is detrimental to them and they don’t know how to ask for help. Some scenarios that may lead to use of the Crisis Shelter include:
- A child may have experienced loss due to the death of a parent or significant caregiver in their life or they may have lost close contact with a parent to divorce leading to depression or anxiety.
- Some kids have experienced a traumatic event that is now leading to feelings of suicidal ideation or acting out behaviors at school or in the home.
- Less supervision in the home, due to illness or work related events of the parent or caregiver, may lead to a child running away or refusing to follow rules at home.
- Abuse or neglect situations where a child needs a safe shelter until a more long-term solution can be found.
- A parent or caregiver who is themselves suffering from mental health issues, needing help and support with their child.
- A child’s mental health needs may be so great that sometimes the parents need a break and we can assist with respite care for the family.
All of the above factors, among many more, can be reasons to utilize Crisis Shelter Care.
The Crisis Shelter provides a critical link for the overall health and safety of adolescents in our community and children and families who utilize our services are helped to find their way to fulfilling lives by connecting with services that help them to reset their relationships, begin to talk more constructively and put new solutions into practice.
Our services are free to the public. For more information call 307-733-6440.