To know, love, and serve street-dependent youth in Austin, Texas


Who we serve

Our ministry targets street-dependent young people and travelers in Austin. 

The average age of our clients is 23. More than half were in foster care in Texas. Thirty percent are women. Some travel from city to city frequently, often by freight trains, and others are more local. They generally prefer to be called street youth over homeless. Our word for them is street-dependent, as they depend on the street for food, clothing, shelter, self-care, friends and support. They are often invisible and unwanted and, as a result, many are very mobile. Their needs are quite different than a typical older homeless person. This is why SYM exists.

What we do

For our clients

Not only do we build relationships with our clients, but we also provide crucial resources such as meals and snacks, socks, toiletries, and clothing. We provide bus passes when working toward goals and college textbooks when enrolled in school!

At 11am, we hold a relationship-building activity. You need to arrive no later than 11:30 to be included. We share a meal together and get to know one another. At 1pm, our co-op team members clean, restock and prepare our drop-in for opening. We realize that not everyone is ready to be a co-op team member, but we expect that everyone will get there. Our drop-in is open from 2-6pm in a come and go format. Our drop-in is easy to access and resembles an apartment, with a kitchen for food, a closet for clothing, a pantry for food, a medicine cabinet for toiletries and first aid supplies, bunk-beds for napping, and a home office for taking care of business.

In addition, we provide access to strengths-based guidance counseling, prayer requests, group activities at 3pm, worship, Bible study, and safe fun activities. When the need arises, we provide candlelight vigils and memorial services.

For our volunteers and supporters

We give individuals safe and predictable access to our clients that they would otherwise find challenging to create. Volunteers can make a real impact in the lives of people who have rarely been accepted or loved. We train all our volunteers in safe practices and boundaries. Volunteer work in 2 hours shifts. During our relationship event, you will do familiar things such as food preparation, setting the table, sharing a meal, and cleanup. During our come and go events, you will do familiar things like sorting mail, baking snacks, heating food, logging donated items for our pantry or closet, greeting people, or helping clients in the home office with referrals or other information.


Calendar of Events

Clients: Expand any event to see details and address. Volunteers: Click on sign-up link in an expanded event. Location and map available on each item.


Needs

We rely primarily on in-kind donations to meet the needs of our clients. We do have a meat and dairy specific fund as these items are not donated frequently.

Amazon Wishlist for Specific Items

We update our Amazon Wishlist monthly for specific items we need. You can ship items to the address shown on the list.
http://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/1HG7BX5IQEU8I

Items Always Needed 

In addition, we always need these items which can be brought to any of our drop-off sites shown on the map below the list. We provide email receipts if you use a drop-off form available at each site.

Fun Stuff
  • Game prizes (sub-$5, new or used, white elephant type of thing!) 
  • Books (Bibles, mysteries, sci-fi, fantasy, thrillers), activity books (trivia,  coloring, puzzle, crossword)
  • Art supplies (drawing pads, markers, clay, mechanical pencils, oil/chalk pastels)
  • Music supplies ( guitars, cases, strings, picks, individual drums, tambourines)
  • Cards (playing, UNO, role play games)
Hard to find Items
  • Shoes: practical adult shoes, work/military boots
  • Outdoor equipment:  backpacks (any kind), tents
  • Hygiene : deodorant, bug spray
  • Clothes: overalls (any kind), athletic/sweat pants, adult jeans, men's and women's underwear (including bras), swimwear
  • Batteries: AA and AAA batteries
Pet Items
  • Dog food (in 3/4-filled gallon ziplock bags) and  cat-food (dry or wet)
  • Leashes, harnesses, and collars of all sizes
  • Dog bowls (metal, plastic or collapsing)
Summer Clothes & Items
  • Water bottles, bottled water, sports drinks
  • Bug-spray, sunscreen
  • Shorts, shirts/tops, flip-flops, hats, low-cut socks
Winter Clothes & Supplies
  • Sleeping bags, blankets, long johns, thermals
  • Hats, gloves, scarves, coats, jackets
  • Long pants, long sleeves, sweaters
Hygiene, Health & First Aid Supplies
  • First aid supplies (Band-Aids, tape, gauze, individual OTC pain killers), braces ( knee, hand, foot, back); vitamins, Emergen-C
  • Toiletries (samples and small bottles: lotion, shampoo, conditioner), deodorant, razors (in Ziplock bags of 2), Q-tips (in Ziplock bags of 10)

Dropoff Sites