15th Night School Mobilization Model

April 15, 2024

Many of us might not think about school as a “resource”, but for some students school may be the only place they can get a hot meal, access the internet, or connect with safe adults. Our Youth Action Council informed us early on in the work of 15th Night that if we wanted to keep young people off the streets, we needed to be working with local schools. With this information, we partnered with South Eugene High School to pilot the 15th Night School Mobilization Model back in 2017. By 2023 we had launched this model in more than 10 schools across 4 school districts in Lane County.  

The 15th Night School Mobilization Model (SMM) brings a mini version of the 15th Night community model to a school with the goal of removing barriers for students accessing school resources, and providing the school’s community with opportunities to support students in need. The biggest different between the school model and the community model of 15th Night, is that while the community model is specifically focused on youth who are unhoused, the school model is intended to help support any student who needs any resource, regardless of their housing status. 

When we start at a new school the first thing we do is talk to as many people as we can to understand what resources the school has, and what resources or services they want and need. We call this “resource mapping” and we do it with as many staff as possible, including everyone from the principal, to the math teachers, and the custodians. 

With youth voice being such an integral part of all that 15th Night does, the SMM wouldn’t be complete without getting input from students as well. We lead a class activity to send students on a “resource treasure hunt” on their campus to find out what resources they have available and where they can access them. We follow up this activity with a discussion that helps us to better understand what resources students know about, what the barriers are to accessing those resources, and what are the best ways to market resources to students. We also ask students to create a “wishlist” of the resources and services they think should be available to themselves and their peers on campus. 

With all of the information that we gather from staff and students, we then compile a report for the administration that includes recommendations for how to remove barriers to accessing resources, and ideas for bringing community resources in to the schools. The next step is to set up a school-specific Rapid Access Network that staff can use to help get their students connected to the school’s resources as quickly as possible, as well as a Google Form that provides students with a confidential way to request supports. We also help the school to recruit Community Responder Volunteers to support students when there is need that can’t be met “in house”. 

The 15th Night School Mobilization Model is set up to help support all students with the hope of removing stigma around resource access and ensuring that we are reaching those who have the greatest need. Through this model we have learned so much and have been able to bring so many community resources in to schools. If you are interested in supporting one of 15th Night’s partner schools, you can sign up to be a Community Responder here or purchase items from a school’s Amazon wishlist here. If you have questions about the School Mobilization Model or want more information please reach out to us at