On average, 2.8 million teens runaway from home each year. Rainbow House, a local emergency shelter for youth, receives 10-15 calls each month from teens who have either been abused or kicked out of their homes. To help combat this serious widespread problem, the Youth Community Coalition partnered with Rainbow House to launch the Safe Place Program.
How does Safe Place work?
Youth can stop by one of 20 Safe Place sites, including the Columbia Public Library. Then, find the first available employee and let them know you are in need of a safe place. Young adults will be connected to emergency shelter and other supportive resources available through Rainbow House.
If you’re in trouble and can’t make it to a Safe Place site, you can text “SAFE” and your current location (address/city/state) to 4HELP (44357). Within seconds, you will receive a message with the closest Safe Place location. You will also have the option to text interactively with a professional for more help. It’s quick, confidential, and safe.
Where are Columbia’s Safe Place sites?
Columbia Fire Stations No. 1-9; Blind Boone Community Center; Columbia Housing Authority; Columbia Public Library; Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services; Activity & Recreation Center; Stephens Lake Activity Center; The Armory; Family Counseling Center; Rainbow House; Voluntary Action Center; COMO Youth Works (formerly Youth Empowerment Zone); and, QuikTrip Gas Station.
View Columbia Safe Place Sites in a larger map
What are some other resources for teens in need?
National Runaway Safeline: (800) 786-2929. Call to receive confidential, anonymous, non-judgmental support.
IMAlive: IMAlive is a live online network that uses instant messaging to respond to people in crisis. Chat with a certified crisis intervention volunteer.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: (800) 273-8255. No matter what problems you are dealing with, they want to help you find a reason to keep living.
Trans Lifeline: (877) 565-8860. A line primarily for transgender people experiencing a crisis. This includes people who may be struggling with their gender identity and are not sure that they are transgender.
Teen Line – Teens Helping Teens: Call (800) 852-8336 or text “TEEN” to 839863. If you have a problem or just want to talk with another teen who understands, then this is the right place for you.