National Clearinghouse on Homeless Youth and Families

The Theme For November's National Runaway Prevention Month was "Friends Helping Friends."

male teen comforting anguished friend

Each year, November commemorates National Runaway Prevention Month (NRPM). The goals of NRPM are twofold: to raise awareness of the runaway and homeless youth crisis and the issues that these young people face and to educate the public about solutions and the role they can play in ending youth homelessness.

Why support NRPM? Between 1.6 and 2.8 million youth run away each year. Many of these young people will end up on the streets and will face many challenges as a result. By supporting NRPM, you are showing America’s runaway and homeless youth that they are not invisible and they are not alone.

The theme of NRPM 2017 is “Friends Helping Friends.” A friend is anyone who can support, listen, and care. Furthermore, a friend can come in the form of a teacher, mentor, peer, or family member. This theme is designed to call awareness to the role key people play in the lives of at-risk youth. 

NRPM is spearheaded each year by the National Runaway Safeline (NRS), a Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) partner in addressing youth homelessness. NRS is available 24/7 to be a friend to and support youth in crisis. With trained staff and volunteers, it offers youth a place to tell their stories without being judged and to get help. NRS can be reached via phone, chat, or email.

To get ideas on how your organization or community can participate, visit the NRS special section on NRPM. From there, you can download a NRPM2017 toolkit, find a sample press release and request to local officials to sign a proclamation, and learn how to raise awareness through social media. You can also visit the FYSB website to find National Runaway Prevention Month Activities planned to commemorate NRPM.