Resources for youth

Every young person’s journey to adulthood is different. Find information to get the right help at the right time.

For statewide resources check out MN Help for Youth, 211, and YSNMN

Connect with the Office of Multicultural Services to get any information on this page translated.

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Health

Health insurance

Choose the best coverage for your needs by exploring MNsure. Use Portico Healthnet for help with getting enrolled and navigating health systems.

When scheduling an appointment at a clinic, ask if your insurance is accepted at that location. If you need to replace your Medical Assistance Card, visit MHCP Member Help Desk for more information.

Clinics

Child and Teen Checkups helps you find clinics. They help individuals younger than 20 years old schedule appointments. Got Transition provides information on how to transition from getting healthcare as a youth to an adult.

The Myself My Health website lists clinics for young adults in the Twin Cities metro area. Visit a clinic near your neighborhood.

Relationships and sexual health

Myself My Health website lists teen and clinics for young adults in the Twin Cities metro area that provide confidential sexual and reproductive health care.

  • Love is respect provides chat, call, and text 24/7 services to get assistance on dating and relationships.
  • That’s not cool raises awareness for healthy relationships online and in-person.
  • Amaze takes the awkward out of sex education and gives you the answers you want to know about sex, your body, and relationships.
  • Outfront has free, confidential crisis counseling and advocacy services about gender identity, gender expression, biological sex, and sexual/romantic attractions.
  • Red Door Clinic in downtown Minneapolis offers sexual health services including pregnancy, STD and HIV testing for anyone.
  • Better Together Hennepin provides programs and services so that all young people have access to sexual education, high-quality reproductive health care, healthy youth development opportunities, and connections to caring adults.
  • No Wrong Door provides assistance to youth who have been or are at risk of being sexually exploited.

Mental health and substance use

Hennepin County can help children and adults find and receive mental health services and help with substance use disorders. Hennepin offers evaluations, therapy and education.

If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, connect with Hennepin County mobile crisis teams (COPE) or call 911.

Services for people with disabilities

The disability hub and DB 101 provides tools and information on health coverage, benefits and employment for individuals with disabilities.

Hennepin County offers services to help people with disabilities live in their communities as independently as possible.

Housing

Affordable options

The path to homeownership is different for everyone. Check out the MN Homeownership Center to take your first step.

Search Pad Mapper or Housing Link for affordable rental opportunities in the neighborhood you want to live in. Individuals may find housing through HB 101 and the Hennepin Housing Key including group residential housing, board and lodging, supportive housing, and independent living.

Staying with a friend or family member

When the guest and the host have shared expectations, staying temporarily at someone’s house while looking for a place to live can be a safe option. It’s important that the guest follows the rules set by the lease and landlord. Hosts should set clear boundaries about how long the guest may stay and what is expected in terms of payment, chores and house rules. If at any time the guest feels unsafe, they should utilize the shelter system or call 911.

The YMCA and Avenues for Youth provide support and training to homes that host young people for a temporary or longer term stay through their host home program.

Hennepin County offers housing options for youth who have been or are at risk of sexual exploitation through the No Wrong Door Initiative.

Homelessness

Hennepin County supports your basic needs at drop-in centers located in downtown Minneapolis at Youthlink, in Bloomington at Oasis for Youth, and at MoveFwd in Hopkins.

Use the website ysnmn.org to find shelter beds available.

If you have experienced homelessness, have lived on the street or in a place unfit to live, connect with an outreach worker on ysnmn.org to complete an assessment to find housing options.

The Coordinated Entry system prioritizes people most in need of housing.

Education

High school or GED

  • To enroll or re-enroll in a school, check out a school near you on this map. Find school options with the Minneapolis School Finder
  • Find a charter school near you, including online options.
  • Check with your school counselor or teacher for tutoring programs and homework assistance at your school, chat online with a tutor from the library, or go to your local library in your neighborhood for homework help or a quiet spot to study.
  • MVNA Pathways helps youth who are expecting or parenting and youth involved in juvenile justice decide what educational pathway is right for them. They provide outreach, academic and career assessments, onsite GED prep, career and vocational training, paid internships, and case management to students enrolled in the program.
  • LEAP, JAG, and Plus network of schools increase educational and employment opportunities for youth and young adults, 14 to 21 years old who are in foster care, involved in the juvenile justice system, teen parents, and/or are homeless or highly mobile.
  • Takoda Prep, Adult Education Centers, Good Will/ Easter Seals and Summit Academy OIC provides classes and assistance to get a GED and vocational training.
  • Be@School supports youth and families in increasing school attendance.

Higher education

  • TRIO, College Possible, and AVID are programs that help youth get their degree and prepare for, enter, and complete college. Talk to your high school counselor to learn more.
  • Destination: Diploma to Degree (D3) at Minneapolis Community and Technical College is a PSEO college program open to students enrolled at approved alternative learning centers (ALC). D3 helps students who are behind in high school credits or who have dropped out earn a high school diploma and take college classes, while working towards a college degree.
  • If you were in foster care after your 16th birthday, you may be eligible for an Education and Training Voucher that provides money for college, including two-year, four-year and certificate programs.
  • If you graduated from a Minneapolis or St. Paul high school, you may qualify for free tuition at certain colleges. Talk to your high school counselor about The Power of You program.
  • Scholly and College Greenlight are great resources for students looking for scholarships.
  • Use the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form to apply for financial aid for college or grad school.

Learning for life

  • Classes are available at the MN Literacy Council for individuals 17 years or older in English, GED, math, computers, and job skills.
  • The Hennepin County libraries offer online resources and community spaces to read, get homework help/tutoring, and learn new skills.
  • The Best Buy teen tech centers make new technology available for teens including music and video production, interactive programming, digital photography, and graphic design.

Transportation and IDs

Transportation

Hennepin County offers many ways to get from place to place. Whether you have your own vehicle or you rely on public transportation, there are many ways to get around Hennepin County.

Personal identification and voting

Having a form of identification is important to find a job, ensure public safety, and to get services. Some locations will accept alternative forms of identification including school ID, library card, and/or city ID. You can prove identification and residence by bringing in a piece of mail with your name and address on it or a bank statement.

Learn how to apply for a State ID (available at any age), obtain a birth certificate, or get a driver’s license at Hennepin County. Connect with the US Social Security Administration to obtain a social security card or the US Department of State for a passport.

Individuals 18 years and older are able to register to vote and vote in local, state, and federal elections. Prepare to vote, register online, and vote at your local polling place.

Job or career

Get resume help, career counseling, job placement and support at your local Career Force Center or online at CareerForce.

Training programs provide year-round and summer jobs and individualized training services for youth, ages 14 to 24. Hennepin County, Minnesota and United States Department of Labor offer specific career opportunities for youth. Connect with a local workforce agency to create your pathway to a career.

Hennepin County provides career pathways for young adults through internships, summer positions, and full-time positions. Check out postings and sign up for reminders when positions open here.

Volunteer

Do you have an experience or expertise that you would be able to provide? Connect with the volunteer team to learn more about volunteering at Hennepin County through health and human services, corrections and public safety, and environment and gardening.

There are many advisory councils and boards throughout Hennepin County that seek young people to advise decision making. Ask any organization you are involved with if they need support for their advisory council. Check out the Minneapolis Youth Congress, the Brooklyn Bridge Alliance, or the MN Alliance for Youth.

Cash and food

Help for young parents

Hennepin County offers a number of programs that help young parents. Find the program that works best for you. Staff, particularly the Youth Eligibility Team, direct, connect, and assist young parents at each Human Service Center.

  • Early childhood intervention services offers support and education from pregnancy to kindergarten.
  • Women, Infants and Children (WIC) offers food vouchers for expecting women or parents with children younger than five.
  • Hennepin Health through MVNA offers home visiting, educational supports, and guidance for young parents.
  • Fathers can find a network of support through the FATHER Project
  • Cash and food assistance are available depending on life circumstance, family size and type, and other factors.
  • Child care assistance helps young parents continue their education and work by providing assistance for child care.
  • Child support helps find parents, establish parentage and set and enforce court orders for support.

Cash and food

A livable income can help you support yourself and your family. To help with budgeting, savings, and credit look to Hands On Banking or Mint for tips and suggestions on how to allocate your income. Access WaypointCAP, and Google to find food shelves near you.

Relationships and support

Your support network

You can identify a team of support who will help you meet your needs and reach your goals.

  • The Center for Parent & Teen Communication gives great advice for teens and parents on building relationships and how to manage stress.
  • Legal Aid offers information for youth on concerns such as abuse, work restrictions for minors, school enrollment and access to government benefits.
  • OutFront Minnesota offers information for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and two-spirit youth.
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services helps young people with immigration and documentation questions.
  • Youth in Transition Conferencing is a series of meetings with a circle of support to help young people plan for living independently. The process draws on the young person’s strengths, interests and goals to come up with a plan for being independent and successful in life. If you are interested, talk to your primary social worker.
  • Youth Resource Guide provides a comprehensive list of services available within the southern and southeast suburbs of Hennepin County.

Hennepin County wants every young person is surrounded by supportive and safe family and community. If you are thinking of fleeing a relationship, home, community or already have left, connect with 1800 Runaway for confidential, non-judgmental advice.

After school opportunities near you

Connect with your community to have fun, receive support to excel in school and move your body.

  • Brooklyn Bridge Alliance provides a youth program locator for Brooklyn Park and Brooklyn Center.
  • Sprockets includes after-school and summer activities in Saint Paul.
  • Whatsup 612 shows activities and programs for youth in Minneapolis.

Relationships and sexual health

Myself My Health website lists teen and clinics for young adults in the Twin Cities metro area that provide confidential sexual and reproductive health care.

  • Love is respect provides chat, call, and text communications to get assistance on dating and relationships.
  • That’s not cool raises awareness for healthy relationships online and in-person.
  • Amaze takes the awkward out of sex education and gives you the answers you want to know about sex, your body, and relationships.
  • Connect with Outfront for free, confidential crisis counseling and advocacy services regarding gender identity, gender expression, biological sex, and sexual/romantic attractions.

Community safety

There is a safe and supervised space 24 hours a day, seven days a week at the Juvenile Supervision Center for people ages 10 to 17.

Drop-in centers for basic needs are located in downtown Minneapolis at Youthlink and Bloomington at Oasis for Youth.

Hennepin County is here to help ensure safety wherever possible through de-escalation, adult and juvenile diversion, alternatives to detention, and probation and rehabilitation.

If you are experiencing or have experienced sexual exploitation or trafficking, are under 18 years old, No Wrong Door can provide services and supports including housing, protection and health care.

Foster care

Hennepin County helps young people that have been separated from their family. Fostering and adoption provide safe places to heal with the support of caring adults. Youth transitioning from foster care to independence may utilize these supports for additional assistance.

  • The Connections to Independence (C2I) and YMCA provide support for young people to build skills and ensure that they are able to live independently in the community of their choice including life coaches, workshops, and leadership opportunities.
  • Youth in Transition Conferencing is a series of meetings to help young people plan for living independently with their circle of support. The process draws on the young persona’s strengths, interests and goals to set a course for future independence and life success. If you are interested, you can talk to your primary social worker.
  • Extended Foster Care provides continued help to young people that turn 18 while in care up to the age of 21. Individuals receive a cash stipend while working or continuing their education to support their transition.
  • STAY funds (Successful Transition to Adulthood for Youth) are available for young people to use at their discretion. Talk to your case worker about receiving extra cash assistance to visit a family member, go on a college tour, sign up for driver’s education, or anything you may need extra funds for.
  • Young people are able to access funds for Post-secondary training and education. Apply online or ask your case worker for more assistance.

Starting at age 18, health insurance and medical coverage is provided to youth in out-of-home placement, up to age 26. Connect with your case worker or Portico Healthnet for MNsure enrollment assistance.

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