What Is Safe Place?
SAFE PLACE consists of a national network of more than 22,000 partnering businesses and community locations, such as fast-food restaurants, convenience stores, fire stations, public buses and libraries, which display the Safe Place sign in their windows. As youth enter a designated Safe Place and ask for help, trained staff members connect them to the appropriate youth shelter for assistance.
Statistics show that 30% of runaway children are lured into sex trafficking within 48 hours on the street.
In addition to Safe Place sites, youth in crisis may also access immediate help by texting the word “safe” and their current location to 4HELP (44357). The youth will receive a reply with the nearest Safe Place location and the phone number for the local Safe Place agency. Youth in crisis can also text interactively with a counselor for more help.
With human trafficking at an all-time high, youth on the streets are in great danger. Together, we can help them get to a safe place quickly.
Christian City is a licensed Safe Place agency for runaway and homeless youth across metro Atlanta.
At Christian City, we serve a large part of the metro Atlanta area through a partnership with QuikTrip stores, YMCA of Metro Atlanta locations, and some fire stations in the following counties: Fulton, Douglas, Carroll, Fayette, Coweta, DeKalb, and Cobb. Teens can also text the word “safe” and their current address to 4HELP (44357) or call 770-964-3301 for immediate assistance.
If your location meets the requirements listed below and you want to learn more about becoming a Safe Place Site in one of the Metro Atlanta counties served by Christian City, please contact our Safe Place Coordinators to learn more.
Kelvin Finlay: 470-588-1766
Tam Finlay: 470-588-1677
Minimum Requirements to Serve as a Safe Place Site:
** Easily accessible
** Youth friendly – safe and comfortable
** Ideally open 24 hours a day/otherwise as many hours as possible
** Located in a high traffic area
** At least two trained employees on duty
Meet Christian City’s Safe Place Coordinators
Growing up in the projects was not easy, but I witnessed my mother giving to anyone in need. It was through her care and generosity for others that I developed a hunger for assisting those in need. My life was not perfect, and I did travel down a wrong street or two. Thankfully, I was drawn to ministry early in life and through those dark times my Christian faith kept me grounded. When I began working, I made sure to volunteer my time and mentor at-risk youth in Atlanta.
Eventually life slowed down, and I met a beautiful woman who shared my desire to serve others. Tam and I married quickly, blended our family of seven, and began serving in our calling. I pastored a small church
for a few years, then God called us to move outside the walls and into the streets. This ultimately guided us in serving as coordinators of the Safe Place Runaway & Homeless Youth Program at Christian City.
I have loved kids for as long as I can remember! I even wanted to be an obstetrician to help bring more children into the world. While I did not become a doctor, I did work as a pediatric medical assistant for a while.
After divorcing and becoming a single parent, I spent a lot of time volunteering at my children’s school. Volunteering paid off and I spent the next 15 years working as a teacher’s assistant. During that time, I met and married a wonderful man. Together we blended our families and raised five wonderful children.
After years away from healthcare, I was offered a job with Grady Health System. It was there that God began to prepare my heart for serving an often-overlooked population, the homeless. At church, our lead pastors asked us to spearhead the Homeless Outreach Ministry and introduced us to the idea of overseeing Safe Place.
National Safe Place Network Creates a Safety Net for Youth
When teens find themselves in crisis or need a place to stay, they should know how and where to get help. Thanks to National Safe Place, immediate help is never too far away. Safe Place provides access to immediate help and supportive resources for youth in need. Since its inception in 1983, Safe Place has helped more than 359,000 youth and currently serves more than 1,500 communities across the country. The program is managed by 140 youth agencies in 38 states and the District of Columbia. To find out more about the national program, visit www.nationalsafeplace.org.