The Opportunity Now Reengagement Hub at Monroe Harding is up and running! In 2019, Monroe Harding was chosen to operate one of two reengagements hubs for Metro Nashville. The Martha O’Bryan Center was chosen to operate the other. The purpose of the Hub is to help disengaged young adults reconnect to the resources they need to help them reengage with their education or career path. Our full Hub staff team came together in early February and included Hub Director Ginger Harris, Hub Specialist Lauren Jones, and Peer Support Workers Tristan Slough, Alesha Alexcee, and Derek Nicholson. Soon after the work started, Nashville was devastated by the March 3 tornado and then the COVID-19 pandemic. Needless to say, this might not seem like an ideal time to start a new program yet the program has been successful despite these challenges. We initially planned for a schedule full of outreach opportunities at community events and canvassing the community for young adults, talking to them about their goals and how we can help. Navigating the virtual world that we are all living in now made our outreach efforts take a different look yet it has not slowed us down. Since February, we made solid connections with 15 agencies that are referring clients to us. We also made 43 solid connections with agencies to which we refer our clients.
The Reengagement Hub is designed to help young adults get back on track with their education and career pathway. The Hub serves young adults, ages 17-24 who are victims of crime and who are not currently in school or working. Trying to hold a full-time job or full class load without stable housing, transportation, food, and/or motivational support might feel almost impossible to accomplish. And, for most, it is. As Nashvillians, we are lucky to have some of the nation’s best nonprofits and a close-knit community with a heart for helping our neighbors. Even so, how would a young adult know about all of the hands reaching out to offer them support? That is where we to come in. Once connected to the Hub, each young adult will meet with a Hub Specialist and be coached through the ins and outs of the services and assistance they might qualify for. Along the way of getting connected to these resources and figuring out their next steps, young adults gain the support of a peer support worker to help them further navigate their path to reengagement in education or employment.
The Hub supports young adults by providing coordinated services and assistance with other community agencies most relevant to their needs, encouraging and empowering them to take matters into their own hands to accomplish their goals, and to walk alongside them on their journey to success.
Recently, Hub staff attended a community event and witnessed one of our young adults in action! Zoe Sneed (@saysneed) is a barber and photographer who is looking to start her own business. We couldn’t be more proud of all of her hard work and accomplishments! She gave free haircuts at the event and made peoples’ day!! Check out our Senior Director of Housing and Young Adult Reengagement Quatrece McKinney’s fresh cut!