Engaging in partnership building between runaway and homeless youth (RHY) and domestic and sexual violence (DV/SA) program raises both philosophical and programmatic considerations.
Philosophically, a shared belief in the need for and benefits of working collaboratively must exist, as was explored in Section 5: Building Partnerships.
- Programmatically, agency policies and services will inform, and in some cases dictate, how the collaboration will occur. Partnering agencies must be open to examining their current practice for possible modifications that can support the collaboration and the enhanced services that will ultimately result. As was discussed in Section 3: Finding Common Ground, issues of eligibility for services and mandated reporting are primary and should be explored early in the collaborative process.
This section of the Toolkit provides guidance on how RHY and DV/SA programs can link and enhance their service provision to better help runaway and homeless youth. Information, tools and strategies drawn from RHY/DV collaborative projects funded by the Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) in 2004 – 2009 are highlighted. Specifically, we discuss the importance of increasing staff understanding and skills in this area, creating a “culture of safety” within partnering agencies, better assessing and responding to relationship violence experienced by runaway and homeless youth, effective outreach, and relationship violence curricula adapted for this population.