2679 Farnam Street, Suite 205
Omaha, NE 68131
Youth Emergency Services assists youth experiencing homelessness
and near homelessness by providing critically-needed resources
which support them in their desire to be self-sufficient.
Data Shows Omaha is not Immune to Human Trafficking

Someone is human trafficked or enslaved every 30 seconds in the United States -- and Omaha is no exception.

Human Traffic Initiative researchers through Creighton University found that by looking through ads on a now-defunct classified advertisements website that about 900 individuals are sold for sex, often multiple times, online in Nebraska each month.

It’s estimated that about 75 percent of those individuals are likely victims of human (sex) trafficking. Research also shows that one in every five individuals sold for sex in Nebraska is sold in multiple markets statewide.

To raise awareness and prevent human trafficking, January is recognized as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Month.

YES and the Women's Center for advancement (WCA) collaborate on Indigo, a program which provides survivors of human trafficking access to low-barrier civil and criminal legal services, clinical advocacy, case management services, and medical and mental health care. 

In recognition of #wearblueday, a day of awareness created by the Department of Homeland Security, the WoodmenLife tower will "wear blue" and light up the Omaha sky Monday, Jan. 11.

Mayor Jean Stothert along with mayors from surrounding communities will make official city proclamations on or before Jan. 11 in honor of those who are trafficked every day.

Learn more about #wearblueday at www.dhs.gov/blue-campaign.

For more information about human slavery and trafficking in Nebraska, visit www.humantraffickinghotline.org/state/nebraska
Best Wishes from YES for a Great 2021

No doubt 2020 was a year few (if any) of us predicted.

But even through the struggles and uncertainty, we learned from and adapted to our 2020 COVID experiences and challenges with a renewed outlook for 2021!

Here are a few examples of how we "pivoted" in 2020:
  • Since March, we've worked successfully in a remote environment while continuing to serve our young people in all of our programs;
  • In response to COVID-19, we started a Mobile Pantry in the spring to bring requested items to our youth to ensure their safety;
  • Although we had to cancel Dance for a Chance in August, we moved our May golf fundraiser to the summer and enjoyed tremendous, safe success;
  • We enjoyed our most successful Giving Tuesday in December (thanks to you!), raising almost $20,000; and
  • We've benefited from an INCREDIBLE RESPONSE from individuals, businesses and foundations this year in the form of grants, partnerships and fundraisers to help make up lost revenue.

As we look forward collectively to a much different 2021 (we hope!), here are a few thoughts from YES staff about what they are most optimistic for in the new year.

We hope these resonate with you as you plan your goals for 2021!

Barb Farho, Development Director: "We made it through 2020, so we can do anything! Looking forward to a new year experiencing the amazing generosity of our community, the opportunity to have events again, and continued progress of our mission to help young people find stable housing and a successful future."

Abby Borgmann, Office Manager: "My wishes for 2021 are health & healing, peace, an end to hate, and for everyone to have access to safe, affordable housing."

Drew Pauly, Outreach Specialist: "My 2021 professional goal is to become a leading advocate for disenfranchised youth in Omaha, and hopefully participate in at least one public speaking/panel (I’ve done this in the past)."

Dulce Sherman, Human Resources: "I wish for the healing of our country due to the loss of so many loved ones, who are homeless and without food." 

Will Meinen, Quality Improvement Manager: "I think we need to get to a place where national politics is not such a prominent part of our lives. Let’s all get vaccinated so we can go see live music this summer and eat at restaurants. What else…I hope we can continue to work together in Omaha to create better opportunities for vulnerable children and families."
Donate to YES While You Shop through Amazon Smile!

YES regularly updates items needed/requested for our youth on our Amazon Wish List.

But did you know you can designate YES as the beneficiary of extra funds through Amazon Smile WHILE YOU SHOP!

It's easy, costs you nothing beyond your normal purchases and HELPS CHANGE the lives of homeless youth!

So, before you fill your online cart with items, be sure to tag YES -- and WE ALL WIN WHEN YOU SHOP!
Meals are an
Ongoing Need
at YES Street Outreach

Did you know YES serves more than 800 meals each month to youth experiencing homelessness and near-homelessness in our community?

We need your help filling the meal calendars for our Street Outreach Center for January and February!

Our Center, which serves hundreds of homeless and near-homeless youth in the community each week, welcomes donations of catered and frozen meals due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Meals should be large enough to feed between 20 and 25 youth. Further details can be found on our Meals Donation Page*.

Thank you for signing up today so our youth 
Don't Go Hungry!

*Donations are tax deductible.
Sharon is a long-time and regular donor to Youth Emergency Services.

Her support stretches back many decades, and her dedication is unparalleled.

Here, she discusses why she regularly supports YES and encourages others to do the same as often as they can.

How did you become associated with Youth Emergency Services?

I became acquainted with YES in 1976 when my husband was asked to help start the organization. He started on the original board of directors at that time.

You've been a long-time/regular supporter of YES. What motivates you to continue to give/support us?

My husband began giving a donation at Christmas, as his company would match the donation. We continued that even after he retired. This was an organization that really spoke to him, about the good works they do. And I met the other board members and spouses and thoroughly enjoyed our times together. YES has always had a great reputation in this community.

What do you enjoy/love about YES and its work to positively impact the lives of young homeless people in the community?

They work week after week to make sure the youth of Omaha have their needs met. And it can’t be easy!! I am sure the need grows each year, even with some youth becoming self-sufficient, more youth appear and need help.

During your years connected to YES, where have you seen its biggest impact in the community?

The organization was originally set up to help the youth who were out on the streets, to get help with housing and food. Now, it has grown amazingly to include education, pregnancy and employment assistance. The “thanks” for all this goes to the staff who run the office, and the donors who fund it.  

My daughter works for a firm that one Christmas adopted YES as their fundraiser. Each employee donated either cash or usable products, and my daughter and I FILLED up her car and delivered it to them. I was so glad to see some of the staff still working there that I had known from years ago. 

What would you say to someone who may be thinking about donating to YES? Why should they?

For people who might be on the fence about donating, I can only say it is a terrific organization that does the work others don’t! But they need the donations to continue doing this. Please think about YES when considering your donations year-round!

Click Here to learn more about how you can become a donor to Youth Emergency Services (YES).

*Donations are tax deductible
Mentoring Changes Lives on Both Sides for the Better

YES pairs many youth each year with mentors in the community who spend valuable time with them.

January is National Mentoring Month, and we salute and proudly recognize all of the mentors who help young people throughout the communtiy. We are so grateful for you!

If you'd like to become a mentor, please contact YES Mentor & Volunteer Coordinator Maren.
We have some exciting EVENTS coming up.
We hope we can count on your support!

Jan. 2021 -- National Slavery & Human Trafficking Prevention Month
Jan. 2021 -- National Mentoring Month
Jan. 11, 2021 -- #wearblueday for National Slavery and Human
Trafficking Prevention Month
May 3, 2021 -- YES Golf Outing, sponsored by Union Pacific)
Aug. 5, 2021 -- Dance for a Chance: The Roaring Twenty-Twenties
Like What We're
Saying? Please Share!

Please share this newsletter with friends and family, and if you aren't seeing something you want to know about YES -- please let us know!

Email Mike with your feedback.

Look for the February 2021 issue of YES News in your mailbox Monday, February 1!

Thank you for helping us spread the word about the great things happening at YES!