Community Update


Youth Ministry


Community partners pick up Mission's youth services program

August 28, 2017

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

In the two weeks since the announcement that we would be closing our Youth Services programing on August 31 and eliminating 13 youth staff jobs, we are pleased to announce that community partners have been identified for all after school programs and four of five sites will remain the same.

Additionally, two-thirds of impacted staff members have received job offers to continue to work with community youth at the Mission or another organization. We are diligently working with partners to sustain the success of the youth programs and ensuring that all staff members are supported practically and financially as they transition to the future. 

“The moment after our staff was informed of the changes, we began meeting with numerous local partners who expressed an interest in continuing a program, with an emphasis on those already serving youth in the community,” said Terry Pallas, chief program officer of the Mission. “We now have written or verbal agreements with seven community organizations outlining how the Mission will support each transition, whether that’s by providing space, equipment, computers, vans, or other resources.”

“It was a very tough decision to discontinue Youth Services so that we could focus on our core mission of serving those who are currently homeless, who will sleep outside tonight,” said Pallas. “It was our hope, and now we are overjoyed, that local partners will pick up this programming so that community youth can continue to be well served.” 

Community Partners

Lake Burien After School Program
New Lead Organization: Lake Burien Presbyterian Church
Location: Lake Burien Presbyterian Church

Tukwila After School Program
New Lead Organization: NorthWest Urban Ministries
Location: Fellowship Bible Church

White Center After School Program
New Lead Organization: Joint partners identified (plan in process)
Location: Beverly Park First Baptist Church

Beacon Hill After School Program
New Lead Organization: Partner identified (plan in process)
Location: Beacon Hill location identified

Remix White Center Program
New Lead Organization: Partner identified (plan in process)
Location: Prior location of Salmon Creek Elementary School

Youth Reach Out Center (YROC) Program
New Lead Organization: Urban Impact and Youth For Christ (YFC)
Location: YROC at the Mission

If you have any further questions, please contact the Mission's Chief Program Officer, Terry Pallas —


August 14, 2017

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the closure of Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission Youth Services department including the Youth Reach Out Center (YROC), our after school care partnerships, and Summer Academy.

As you may know, Seattle is in the midst of a homelessness crisis and the Mission has responded in a significant way to this urgent need. During the past few years, we continue to increase staff, time, and energy to respond to the crisis, but the needs continue to grow. At the same time, we experienced a tough budget year and cannot continue to sustain every program that we have traditionally offered.

After much prayer and consideration, and with the input of our Board of Trustees, we will be focusing our efforts on our root calling — homelessness. This has been an extremely difficult decision, and we know it creates some difficult challenges for you as well. We deeply value each of you, our neighbors, churches, partners and friends that we have served for many years.

We realize that the timing of this announcement will be tough for many families. Middle and high schoolers may find other after school options at local organizations. It might be harder for elementary age children given the shortage of affordable after school care programs for this age group. Our hope is that some of the churches that have hosted these programs with us will continue to do so in the future. The Mission is prepared to donate equipment and/or vans previously used by each specific school care program to assist in the transition as needed.

It has been a privilege and joy to serve you and your children.

Thank you for entrusting us throughout the years.

If you have any further questions, please contact the Mission's Chief Program Officer, Terry Pallas —