CATS Announce Winner Of Annual Safe Space Youth Art Contest

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — CATS officials unveil the winner of the annual Safe Place Week youth art contest with their artwork to be displayed on CATS buses and trains across Charlotte ahead of National Safe Place Week.

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Officials say the winning artwork was created by child staying at The Relatives’ Youth Crisis Center, and reflects how the artist feels about the yellow Safe Place sign, which indicates a safe haven for youth in crisis.

National Safe Place Week runs from March 21st through March 27th and recognizes Safe Place agencies for their outreach and prevention programs for youth in crisis.

“As a transit system that views safety as our top priority, we are thrilled to continue this partnership that helps provide an essential connection to help and resources a child in crisis may need,” says John Lewis, CATS CEO. 

CATS officials say its vehicles are deemed “Safe Places” where youth in crisis can seek help to be connected to The Relatives in Charlotte, who serve as the Safe Place agency for children in Mecklenburg County from ages 7 to 17-years-old and .

“In 2020, The Relatives assisted 431 youth and families at the Youth Crisis Center and received over 4,505 crisis calls,” said Trish Hobson, Executive Director of The Relatives. “There is a great need in this community for youth who are in crisis. When I see the yellow Safe Place signs it reminds me that our entire community wants to keep kids safe. We are so thankful for our partnership with the Charlotte Area Transit System as a Safe Place to accept young people who are in need of help.”