HELP Program

HELP Program Referral

The HELP program serves students and families who are living in temporary housing, inadequate housing, or living without a parent or guardian. This includes students who qualify for services under the McKinney-Vento Act as well as students who are involved with the Foster Care system. More information about these services can be found below.

If you know of a student or family facing any of these issues, please fill out the referral form below. Someone from the HELP Program will reach out with information about their rights and resources available to them.

HELP Referral form

Who does HELP work with?

The HELP Program works with students qualify for services under the McKinney-Vento act as well as students in the foster care system. You might qualify for the McKinney-Vento act if you lack a “fixed, regular, and adequate” nighttime resident.  Examples of living situations that fit this definition include:

  • Living with relatives, friends, or others due economic hardship
  • Living in a hotel or motel
  • Living in a shelter
  • Living in a car, campground, or RV
  • Living in a house that lacks water or electricity, has an infestation of pest or mold, etc.
  • Students who are living without a parent or legal guardian

Students qualify for Foster Care services if they are in custody of DHS. If you are acting as the resource parent for a student in Foster Care, please contact the HELP Program Coordinator. Contact information can be found below.

What rights do I have under McKinney-Vento and as a Foster Care Student?

Students in the foster care system and McKinney-Vento students have rights that a school district must accommodate. The HELP Program works to ensure that every student eligible for services is informed of and receives them. These rights include:

  • Immediate enrollment in school, even when records normally required for enrollment are not available.
  • The right to attend your “school of origin”. This is the school you attended before you became homeless or entered the foster care system. This includes the right to transportation to that “school of origin”.
  • The right to attend programs and receive educational services for which you are eligible.
  • The removal of barriers to accessing academic and extracurricular activities
  • A right to not be charged certain fees or dues by the school district
  • Access to free lunch and breakfast at schools
  • Students not living with a parent or guardian may be able to act, in a limited fashion, as their own parent/guardian for certain decisions related to their education
  • The right to dispute any eligibility, school selection, or enrollment decisions.

If you have any questions about any of the rights listed above, please contact the HELP Program Coordinator. Contact information can be found below.

Other service provided by the HELP Program

In order to reduce the barriers faced by McKinney-Vento and Foster Care students, the HELP program is able to provide additional services. These include:

  • School supplies
  • Hygiene Products
  • Donated clothing
  • Tutoring and homework help
  • Transportation assistance
  • Access to early childhood programs
  • Access to after school programs and extra-curricular activities
  • Referrals to community groups and resources that may be able to assist further

Some services may be dependent on funding and supply.



HELP Coordinator

Woody Crobar
Office Phone: 541-265-4506

North Area Advocate (Lincoln City Schools)

Tracy Berry
Cell Phone: 541-272-0328

South Area Advocate (Waldport Schools)

Desiree Panning
Student Advocate
Cell Phone: 541-270-4183

Bree Smith
JOY Advocate
Office Phone: 541-563-3243

East Area Advocate (Toledo, Eddyville, Siletz Schools)

Debbie Haverland
Cell Phone: 541-270-3905

Tia Retherford
JOY Advocate
Office Phone: 541-336-5104 ext. 102

West Area Advocate (Newport Schools)

Cristy Stringer
Cell Phone: 541-272-1791

Helyn Layton 
JOY Advocate/YTP Transition Specialist
Cell Phone: 541-272-7002

Bilingual Advocates

Hernandez (East, West and South)
Cell Phone: 541-270-3816
Office Phone: 541-574-0505

Jazmin Aguilar (North)
Cell Phone: 541-270-3462

Bilingual Customer Service Coordinator

Aracelly Guevara
Office Phone: 541-574-7638

HELP Centers

There are four HELP Centers that provide resources and educational programs to all students:

Contact the local HELP advocate for information on hours and programs at each site.

HELP Next Level Trainings

Donate Online

If you would like to donate to the HELP Program, please visit the link below (First, select District Office, then select HELP Program.):

Donate Now