Candlelight Vigil for homeless youth and families

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District News ReleasePrint
Contact: Pegge Erkeneff, 907.714.8888

Candlelight Vigil for homeless youth and families

Soldotna, November 5, 2014—Families and unaccompanied youth are homeless on the peninsula. An invisible reality to most residents, the number 253 is important. Would it surprise you to know that 253 is the average number of students who are homeless in the KPBSD Students In Transition (SIT) program, and attending a KPBSD school?

The community is invited to learn more at an annual candlelight vigil for homeless youth and families:

Thursday, November 13, 2014

6:00 – 7:00 p.m.

Farnsworth Park

Birch Street, Soldotna, Alaska

Guest speaker Dr. Steve Atwater, KPBSD superintendent, will help raise awareness about the reality of homelessness on the Kenai Peninsula. Music will be provided by Beau Miller and Scott Lazaros. Please dress for the weather.

The SIT program has enrolled 138 students since the start of the school year, which is thirty-three percent higher than last year at this time. In the central peninsula, 111 youth are enrolled, and thirteen are unaccompanied youth, while ninety-eight are with a family unit. In the southern peninsula, twenty-seven students are enrolled, eighteen are unaccompanied youth, and nine are with a family unit.

“One of our more persistent challenges is serving our students in transition,” said Dr. Steve Atwater, superintendent. “The good work of our students in transition coordinator Kelly King and our Students in Transition Facebook page are helping us to meet this challenge. The public vigil is a good opportunity for all of us to stop and reflect on our students in transition. I trust that each of these students will benefit from this attention.”

2014 Candlelight Vigil Poster PDF with disclaimerAbout KPBSD Students in Transition (SIT) program
Students experiencing homelessness are provided assistance through two KPBSD homeless liaisons. This program’s primary purpose is to ensure that educational programs for students are not interrupted while they are in transition. In order to facilitate helping our communities grow in awareness and advocacy, KPBSD created a Facebook page to provide updates and resources. Please like and share, KPBSD Students in Transition.

The SIT program provides KPBSD Pre-K to12th grade students:
• An advocate to help students and families find the resources they need in the community for food, shelter, clothing, transportation, and permanent housing
• Free school lunches
• School supplies
• Immediate school enrollment
• Paperwork assistance to secure school documents
• Special academic support if needed
• Local referrals to other agencies

Eligible families or youth are those who lack a stable, adequate, and permanent place to sleep at night. If you or someone you know is sleeping in a motel, a camper, a tent, couch-surfing, or living with friends or relatives then this program can help.

KPBSD Students in Transition program contacts 
Kelly King, homeless liaison, serving Central Peninsula, Seward and Tyonek schools,, 907.714.8869
Jane Dunn, homeless liaison, serving Southern Peninsula schools and Ninilchik,, 907.226.1890



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Homeless vigil 2011


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