Youth Development Drop-In Center
Covenant House Illinois' Youth Development Center is a place where youth experiencing homelessness can
immediately address their most urgent needs. When a young person chooses to come to CHIL they are
welcomed into a safe and supportive environment where they can access food, showers, laundry, personal
storage, case management, employment and education, and a place to rest and relax.
Visitors to our Youth Development Center do not need a referral and any at-risk or homeless young person will be welcomed and met with support.
We empower youth by providing holistic trauma-informed care to meet each person’s individual and unique
goals. Through our residential program, youth live at CHIL while receiving clinical case management and
trauma-informed wrap-around services. Our clinical case managers support youth as they navigate and access
community services, establish and work toward their goals, and secure permanent housing that fits their needs.
Case Management Services
We welcome young people into a safe, caring environment where they are respected and supported by a team of individuals committed to helping them in whatever capacity they can to meet their needs and achieve their goals. Our Clinical Case Managers are committed to meeting the youth where they are and partnering with them to create and work towards their goals in life. The Clinical Case Managers provide a unique combination of clinical work and case management services so young people can access a broader level of engagement on-site with staff. Through engagement and welcoming partnerships, youth are empowered to access services they need on site or via linkages with other youth specialized providers.
Our Community Outreach Services ensure that schools, community centers, and other community-based providers know about our services so we can continue to engage youth who are experiencing homelessness.
In collaboration with other agencies, we care for or refer young people to other partners to ensure that no young person has to spend a night on the streets.
Covenant House Illinois also provides workforce services and access to other occupational and educational resources on-site. Through our partnership with other agencies, we provide a comprehensive range of workforce training, support and job placement services. Realizing the ongoing dedication and perseverance required in building a more stable life, youth can come to the center as many times as they need to access these services as they continue to work toward brighter futures.
What We Believe: Our 5 Guiding Principles
Homeless youth come to Covenant House in crisis. Immediately and without question, we meet their basic human needs – a nourishing meal, a shower, clean clothes, medical attention and a safe place away from the dangers of the street or an abusive home.
Homeless young people arriving at our door are often frightened and mistrustful. They can grow only when they feel safe and secure. Covenant House protects them from the trauma of the street and offers a critical sense of security.
Covenant House Illinois strives to achieve the highest level of care. We lead by example that caring relationships are based on trust, respect and honesty.
Homeless youth never know how they will get their next meal or where they will sleep. Covenant House provides the stability and structure necessary to build a positive future.
Young people often feel powerless to control their lives and fall into a self-defeating cycle of failure. Our work fosters confidence, encouraging young people to believe in themselves and make smart choices for their lives.