Title image: Kevin Heffernan

Compass House is a shelter and resource center for runaway and homeless youth

Our team at Rise and the 67 artists that make up ShopCraft on Elmwood are excited to join you inĀ  providing financial support to Compass House, a shelter for runaway youth in Buffalo and throughout Erie County. Located in the center of the city on Linwood Ave, Compass House is always open and always receiving youth facing the most challenging moments in their young lives. Without prejudice, the team at Compass House takes these children in and gets to work on solving the issues that brought them there in the first place.

“We actually shelter about 13 youth at any given time, ages 12-17 both male and female. When the kids come to us, they often have a lot of problems. The only thing they have to agree to is to work to solve the problems that brought them here. About 70% of them do end up going back home which is the best-case scenario. But we are here to help any runaway or homeless youth, and help navigate their issues so we can get them back to their families where appropriate.”

– Lisa Freeman Executive Director, Compass House

“When a client comes to Compass House (through a variety of ways, Safe Places at Tops Friendly Markets, every NFTA bus, referrals from schools, social service agencies, police drop-offs) we make this a warm, welcoming place. They’ll get a warm meal, relax, watch TV because no one really wants to be here. So we try to make it as warm and comfortable as possible. So it’s really not a bad place to be.”

Compass House serves a diverse population, from youth leaving wealthy families in the suburbs to youth facing homelessness here in the city. We cut our interview short when the door bell rang and a new client had arrived. Compass House is in need of underwear and bras, toiletries and hygiene products. Our fundraiser this Friday December 13 will see 50% of Rise sales go straight to their organization, and 10% of all ShopCraft sales, too. We’re donating cash because there’s better buying power for a non profit who is tax exempt to get even more goods inside their doors.

Please join us. We’ll be cranking up the music and putting out some free drinks.