In an effort to raise awareness of the issue of teenage runaways, County Executive Edward P. Mangano has declared November as Runaway Prevention Month in Nassau. Statistics indicate that more than 4,000 youth run away from home, are thrown out, or pushed out of their home each year in Nassau County.
In October 2002, President Bush hosted the landmark White House Conference on Exploited and Runaway Children where leaders across the nation convened to discuss the challenges related to runaway youth that our nation must face today. What once was known as National Runaway Prevention Week was expanded into a month long prevention and awareness campaign observed in November. The national initiative includes a “Greenlight Campaign,” whereby individuals and organizations can show support and awareness of runaway youth issues by installing a green light bulb.
From November 9th to the 13th, the dome of the Theodore Roosevelt Executive and Legislative Office Building will be illuminated green. Furthermore, the Nassau County Office of Youth Services will be distributing green light bulbs and wrist bands to community members, businesses, and at Runaway Training Events and Open Houses.
For information on teenage runaway prevention initiatives, please contact: Keith Gerber, Coordinator of Runaway/Homeless Youth Services, at (516) 227-7127. To access emergency shelter, contact Family & Children’s Association’s Nassau Haven at (516) 221-1310 or for 24/7 assistance call the Long Island Crisis Center’s Runaway Hotline at (516) 679-1111.