Freedom Mcmurray- Ryan's Place

Freedom Mcmurray, a Knox County resident, came to Ryan’s Place feeling uncertain and in need of help. She had nowhere to turn and hoped KCEOC Community Action Partnership’s Ryan’s Place could help her get a second chance at success.

Freedom was a high school student living with her grandmother. When she graduated, she moved out and found herself homeless with nowhere to turn. Her living situation with her grandmother had become an unstable situation for the both of them.

Freedom knew someone who was familiar with her situation who offered her a place to stay when she turned 18. The agreement was she could stay until Freedom went to college that Fall.

Three weeks after moving in, her friend’s husband gave both Freedom and the friend an eviction notice. Moving back into her grandmother’s home was not an option as the grandmother, brother and grandfather were evicted from their home. Once again, Freedom found herself homeless.

During her senior year she formed a relationship with a mentor. Her mentor, knowing she needed a place to live, suggested Freedom contact Ryan’s Place to see if there was availability. She came to Ryan’s Place in June 2019, the summer following her high school graduation.

KCEOC’s Ryan’s Place is a Crisis Center for youth ages 18-24 that are experiencing homelessness. There are multiple forms of homelessness such as staying in a place not meant for human habitation, fleeing a domestic violence situation, etc. Ryan’s Place is named in memory of Ryan White, a former client at the KCEOC Emergency Support Center who tragically passed away at age 18. Ryan’s Place keeps Ryan’s dream of having a place for youth to be safe and become adults. Ryan’s Place operates under a HUD Youth Homeless Demonstration Program Grant.

Services offered by Ryan’s Place include: housing search and counseling service (finding and obtaining housing), employment services (obtaining employment), education services (obtaining GED, applying for college), life skills training (money management, conflict management, parenting skills), and case management (referrals to professionals, assist with obtaining benefits, etc.).

Freedom explained her time at Ryan’s Place as good. She had her own space with everything she needed along with people she knew, so she had fri