Brand New Day’s target age for the youth in our shelters is 12-17. While we will soon lower our intake age range to 10, our focus is still teens for two reasons. First, there is a lack of shelters for this age range and secondly, often times it’s when kids become adolescents that they start to get serious about wanting to leave the street and get their lives on track. This attitude is crucial for kids to be successful in our shelter.
So by virtue of focusing on teens, a huge part of our program is preparing the older ones for successful transition into adulthood. By the end of April we will have three 17-year-olds, so we have been developing our program to enhance their skills training and preparation to make sure they are well-equipped for independence as they gradually transition in the next year or two.
So far they have been learning hands-on maintenance, woodworking, and gardening skills at our land, and they are also taking a personal financial accountability course taught by a fellow missionary.
Though these young men will soon be becoming more independent, we will continue to provide for their needs until they finish high school, and if we can find sponsors for them, we also want to help them go to college. Please pray for wisdom as we continue to develop this part of our program and for these boys as they continue to grow and mature.
I’d would also love to share one success story of our “independents”. Inad, who’s now 25-years-old, was one of our first residents in the boys’ shelter back in 2014. Over the years he has continued to mature and develop into a godly young man with a heart to serve, always helping out at BND. A few years ago he got his driver’s license, and he has also learned many maintenance skills along the way. Earlier this year he also graduated from a one-month intensive welding course at Second Mile Ministries. Inad now lives at our land and takes good care of it when he’s not driving and doing maintenance at the BND homes. So we have recently decided to make it official and invite Inad to join our staff team!