Lehigh Valley

Synergy Project aims to help homeless youths

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Shane Borroughs is a man on a mission to find and help homeless kids.

"Some of the kids are living in the woods or on the streets, and some of the kids we work with are doubled-up in people's homes, living couch to couch," he said.

Thursday night, the search took us off-road along the Lehigh River.

"We've run across several groups of freight train kids who are riding freight trains," said Burroughs.

Burroughs is part of The Synergy Project, a group that recently moved into Allentown after years of working in Bucks County. Federal grants and donations fund their efforts. The work takes them to dangerous spots where kids camp.

"They're a lot more vulnerable and they are much more in need of guidance," said Burroughs, who added that human traffickers often target homeless kids.

Syngery hands out food, toothpaste, and even camping supplies.  Burroughs insisted it's not just a hand-out, but a hand-up.

"We have lots of success stories," he said. "Getting finished with their education, finding employment and we help them secure housing whenever possible."

Burroughs said Synergy has already reached 65 young people since the group moved into Allentown last November. He eventually expects to reach several hundred youth each year.

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