Haley Smith- Ryan's Place

Ryan’s Place is a place for youth experiencing homelessness to live and receive services to help them obtain permanent housing. Ryan’s place is a safe haven for youth experiencing homelessness to come in, stay and receive services, and get back on their feet. We have four two bedroom units for youth 18-24 that find themselves homeless. Each unit serves two separate individuals. They share the common areas and have private bedrooms. There is an onsite case manager that provides educational skills, life skills, employment, and other supportive services. As well as, set a path for permanent housing. A participant of Ryan’s Place, Haley Smith, found herself homeless at the age of 18. Because of differences of opinions with her family, she was forced to move out. Haley only had a bag of belongings, and the stress of finding a new place to call home. That is when she heard about Ryan’s Place and decided to take a leap of faith for a new beginning. She called Ryan’s placed home for four months. When asked about her experience at Ryan’s Place Haley said, “My experience here was competitive and stressful at times, but the staff was amazing. I say competitive because I competed with life itself.” Ryan’s place is a safe haven for youth experiencing homelessness to come in, stay, receive services, and get back on their feet.

Ryan’s place is also place for the discovery of you. At such a young age, and having to grow and fend for yourself, Ryan’s Place helps with the transition into adulthood. Haley said, “What I liked most about Ryan’s Place was gaining and learning my independence. You didn’t do your laundry you had no clothes to wear. You didn’t cook you didn’t eat.” Ryan’s Place helps our clients learn these basic skills you need to become independent and live on your own.


Ryan’s Place helps their clients grow and learn new life skills. Haley said, “Ryan’s Place taught me to just be my own individual, it is okay to mess up, what is important is you learn as you go. I was surprised to learn how to work with others and be a responsible adult.”

Ryan’s Place makes a difference in each client’s life. And, this is what we did for Haley. She said, “The changes I have made are, I worked very hard going next door to KCEOC KY Career Center Job sight to make sure I always used my time wisely that is the key to success especially when you’re trying to get on your feet. On the last day I was there I walked in panicking because all this time I had been job searching and they hand me a paper stating, “Try this number,” it was working on a farm so I did, and I received the job after doing an interview. Another change I have made in myself is using my resources when I feel down, I'd go in and talk to the case manager or go for a little walk in town, I was always doing something.”


As our ultimate goal of our clients gaining self-sufficiency, Haley has now moved into her own home. From being homeless, to being able to support yourself is a great accomplishment. Haley said, “The feeling of being in your new home is overwhelming but exciting at first; it can be scary to be on your own so if you get a landlord that approves of you having a pet and you’re on your own I would definitely recommend it. Moving into your new home if you really sit down and think about reality you wonder. How did I get to this position? Because personally I went from being homeless and not knowing how to deal with myself to having a home and job, I started earning money.”


Haley also became independent through her stay at Ryan’s Place. Haley did not like relying on others for assistance, and through Ryan’s Place she no longer has that worry. Haley said, “Having a job and being independent is something I've always dreamed of, I always hated relying on other people, but as I got older I realized it is okay to ask for help and get the support you need.”As our ultimate goal of our clients gaining self-sufficiency, Haley has now moved into her own home. From being homeless, to being able to support yourself is a great accomplishment. Haley said, “The feeling of being in your new home is overwhelming but exciting at first; it can be scary to be on your own so if you get a landlord that approves of you having a pet and you’re on your own I would definitely recommend it. Moving into your new home if you really sit down and think about reality you wonder. How did I get to this position? Because personally I went from being homeless and not knowing how to deal with myself to having a home and job, I started earning money.”


KCEOC asked Haley what advice she would give others that are in need of housing and services. Haley responded, “Don’t ever be afraid to ask for help, get out there every day and use your time wisely and find a hobby you love or enjoy doing to keep yourself busy. Also, stay motivated and faithful, you shall accomplish anything you want to, even if you need help with that motivation and faith there is always hope. Never give up! I just want to let the youth know if there's no hope KCEOC and I do care and this is hope with us.”


Haley recently got married and is expecting twins. Her husband is working two jobs to ensure their financial stability. They are looking forward to a bright future. Never allow a moment in time to define your entire future. KCEOC is very proud of Haley and how much she has accomplished. She went from a youth experiencing homelessness to having a home and a family.

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KCEOC
Community Action Partnership

This project is funded, in part, under a contract with the Cabinet for Health and Family Services with funds from the Community Services Block Grant Act of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Email: klsergent@kceoc.com

Phone: 606-546-3152

Mailing: P.O. Box 490, Barbourville, KY 40906

Physical: 5448 N US 25E, Gray, KY 40734

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