Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

"Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers." - Voltaire


What is the Hastings Youth Council and how is it related to the Youth Advocate Program in Hastings?

The Hastings Youth Council is an official committee of volunteer community members appointed by the Hastings mayor and Board of Trustees that oversees the staff and programs of the Youth Advocate Program and Youth Employment Services as well as has developed many of its own programs and ventures such as Mercy College Internship, Hastings K.I.D.S.(Kids Involved Doing Service), What's Cookin?, Bingo Battle, Help-a-Child, etc. In addition, the Council has established partnerships with the school district, local law enforcement and other local charitable organizations or institutions.


Where is the Hastings food pantry, what kinds of food items do you primarily need as donations, and what hours is it open?

The Hastings Food Pantry is located on the lower level of the James V. Harmon Community Center at 44 Main St. in Hastings. Non-perishable items such as pastas, cereals, peanut butter, etc. are the most needed items. The Pantry is open Monday through Thursday 9 to 7pm, Friday 9am-10pm, Sat 12-7pm during the school year. During the summer, there are no weekend hours and the pantry is open Monday through Thursday 9am-6pm and Friday 9am-10pm.


What is Safe Rides and who and when can they use it?

Safe Rides is a complimentary service offered by the Hastings Youth Council which provides free, safe transportation home on Friday and Saturday evenings from 10pm-1am to all Hastings youth. This program was designed as a non-judgemental (don't ask, don't tell), equal opportunity service available equally to all village youth. If your child finds him/herself in a compromised situation whether it be just too late to walk home alone or whose judgment is significantly impaired by the use of drugs and/or alcohol, then they should feel rest assured that there is a safety net in the form of free transportation available to them.


My child(ren)  is/are going to come to the afterschool program at the Community Center for the first time, is there anything I need to do?

If possible, it is helpful if you accompany your child during their first visit. We will ask you or your child to complete an information/contact form. This helps us contact a parent/guardian in case of emergency and also lets us know about any allergy or medical conditions. Children 3rd grade or younger must be accompanied by a parent/guardian or a responsible older sibling, although alternative arrangements can be made under special circumstances.


Are the kids supervised when they’re at the Youth Advocate Program?

YES! We have a minimum of two staff on duty for each afternoon.  All staff are experienced with children of all ages. The staff monitors the whereabouts, behavior and safety of the kids who come to the community center.