Merrymeeting Support Collaborative for Youth Experiencing Homelessness
Our Merrymeeting Support Collaborative for Youth Experiencing Homelessness (“MSCYEH”) provides stability to youth experiencing homelessness through a regional network of support, increasing student attendance, and academic success while supporting social-emotional health. MSCYEH includes MSAD 75 & RSU 1 (Sagadahoc County) along with MYC, located in Bath.
Donna Verhoeven, Youth Outreach Coordinator, works with children and youth up to age 24 experiencing homelessness throughout Sagadahoc County, Brunswick & Harpswell.
With office hours at Midcoast Youth Center, and at schools within RSU 1 and MSAD 75, Donna assists youth with:
For Maine Youth & Families
Donna Verhoeven (she/her/hers)
What is the McKinney-Vento Act?
The federal McKinney-Vento Act serves to protect children's educational rights during times of housing insecurity. Eligible youth are entitled to opportunities to eliminate barriers to their education.
Child's Rights Under the McKinney-Vento Act:
- Free public education
- Immediate enrollment into school
- Continued enrollment at your school of origin
- Transportation to and from school
- School nutrition programs, including free and reduced lunch
You are eligible for the McKinney-Vento service if you live in any of the following situations:
- Emergency or transitional shelters
- Sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, etc.
- Cars, parks, public spaces, substandard housing, abandoned buildings, or similar settings
- Motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate housing
Did you know?
A minor may give consent to all medical, mental, dental and other health counseling and services if the minor is living separately from parents or legal guardians and is independent of parental support.
The minor may prove that status with documentation including, but not limited to a written statement from a nonprofit homeless services agency, local educational agency McKinney-Vento homeless liaison, or attorney.
Pursuant to Me. Rev. Stat. §22:1503
Resources for Youth Experiencing Housing Insecurity
Preble Street’s Mobile Diversion and Navigation program works with youth and young adults ages 12-24 to rapidly resolve episodes of, or potential episodes of, homelessness through connection to short- and long-term resources, mediation, financial assistance, and supportive services. Eligible youth and young adults include those who are currently experiencing homelessness, at imminent risk of becoming homeless or are fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence and have minimal options for support.
Our work can look like a one-time contact to meet an immediate need to prevent homelessness such as a tank of gas to get to a place to stay, a bus ticket, or real-time safety planning to come up with a diversion plan from shelter and streets that temporarily maintains safety. And-- Our work can also look like an up to 3-month casework intervention that involves ongoing contact, safety planning, and "band-aiding" to continue to creatively use resources and community connections to maintain a young person in their home community or community of choice, while concurrently connecting to longer-term service providers.
Maine Educators, do you have students who may have unstable housing?
RSU 1 McKinney-Vento Liason
Katie Joseph, (she/her/hers)
Regional School Unit 1
34 Wing Farm Parkway Bath, ME 04530
MSAD75 McKinney-Vento Liason
Amanda Hersey, Ed.D. (she/her/hers)
Assistant Superintendent MSAD 75
207-729-9961 ext. 1014