Rosendale, NY 12472
PO Box 3516
Kingston, NY 12402
Staff: 11 full-time/4 part-time
Program Director: Kielawan Ahmed
Program Hours: Access to the shelter is available 24 hours a day.
PRIMARY FUNCTIONS: Emergency shelter for up to 14 runaway and homeless youth, ages 12 – 17, for an initial stay of up to 30 days, and an additional 30 days approved by the Ulster County Runaway Coordinator. By regulation, parental consent is not required for the first 30 day stay. Previously, the program was granted two waivers by the NYS OCFS from licensing requirements, allowing the program to serve one 18 year old at a time for up to one week in the first floor bedroom, and to serve a parenting youth and his/her infant/toddler. The ages of youth served and waivers have changed as a result of new regulations on the both New York State and Federal levels. As to 18 year olds, while our Darmstadt Shelter does provide ongoing safe shelter and support services to 18 year olds and older, there have been occasions when a particularly vulnerable youth turns 18 while at Family House. If the program is able to identify a permanent housing placement for that youth within the next week after turning 18, we have previously been allowed shelter at Family House. We are applying for a waiver to continue to be allowed to provide this service in instances where the makeup of the current residents safely allows.
ANCILLARY SERVICES: Individual, family, and group counseling for all clients; life skills training; access and advocacy for educational, medical, legal, mental health and substance abuse services; services for youth involved in the juvenile justice/Family Court systems; and aftercare services.
Family House was successful in receiving a 3-year grant from the USD HHS in the amount of $200,000 a year. Unfortunately, it was rejected by the Mother Cabrini Foundation, and as a result, lost $185,000. Over the last year and a half, the program has struggled with leadership and supervision as a result of staff turnover.
After many years, the program’s Director, Cynthia Bennett, retired. When Cynthia retired, the Agency was able to promote Kielawan Ahmed, who served for many years as the Assistant Program Director to the position of Program Director. Kie brings a strong commitment to the youth and a renewed energy to the rebuilding of the program. The Agency and program are fortunate to have hired a skilled and energetic new Team Leader for Adolescent Services, Robert Molina, who is currently actively supporting the program and the reestablishment of comprehensive training and policies for the program.
The program has recently replaced three Case Managers and Residential staff and will be spending the next few months actively reviewing all of the policies and procedures the program requires and training the new staff. Toward that end, the program has reached out to RHYTAC for assistance with training as well as scheduling an additional round of the Agency’s 48-hour comprehensive training. We are excited at the new energy and the creativity of the new leadership team and believe that the program is going to thrive in the coming year.