Youth Connection is "home" for some kids this Christmas.

Youth Connection is "home" for some kids this Christmas.

Most youth run away from something rather than to something. They leave home to escape abusive situations or because their basic needs are not being met. Abuse often leads to other problems including low self-esteem, poor relationships with others, substance abuse, dropping out of school, juvenile delinquency and adult crime. Overall the needs of runaway and homeless youth beg for attention, and contribution allows North Texas Youth Connection to be the "something" they can run towards.

While there is no substitute for a good home with loving parents, NTYC (formerly Juvenile Alternatives) provides a safe, loving and home-like environment.

NTYC services currently include the Emergency Shelter for youth ages 10-17; a Transitional Living Program for youth ages 16-24; Services to At-Risk Youth crisis intervention family counseling program; sponsorship of the National Safe Place Project; along with several other homelessness prevention programs and services. The agency is the only emergency shelter for youth ages 10-17 between Plano, Wichita Falls and Texarkana.

One immediate wish this Christmas is public and private support to complete the expansion of a new shelter facility that will allow the shelter to host more youth and provide additional services.

Wish list for sheltered kids:

• gift cards to purchase age-appropriate Christmas presents and clothing;

• restaurant cards;

• board and video games;

• basketballs and footballs;

• toiletry kits, including liquid body soap, toothbrushes and deodorant;

• office and school supplies; and

• cash donations.

Contact North Texas Youth Connection at, 100 Memorial Drive, Denison, Texas 75020; 903-893-4717, or donate online at The organization’s mailing address is P.O. Box 1625, Sherman, Texas 75091.

The Wish List feature of the Herald Democrat is an ongoing Christmas tradition. Agencies wishing to submit a wish list should email them to with "Wish List" in the subject line. For a list of previously published Wish Lists, visit