DENVER — Greyhound is offering free bus tickets to runaway teens who want to get back home.
The company partnered with the National Runaway Safeline to create a program called “Home Free.”
According to Greyhound, “Home Free” helps reconnect 400 kids with their families in the U.S. every year.
The program has been around for several years, but Greyhound is reminding the public about the resource.
To be eligible, the person must be between the ages of 12 and 21 years old, they must be named on a runaway report, they must call the National Runaway Safeline (1-800-RUNAWAY), and must be willing to be reunited with their families.
“It’s a huge help to have something like that,” said Assistant Supervisor of the Urban Peak Drop-In Center Kelsey Stone. Urban Peak is an organization dedicated to helping homeless and runaway youth in the Denver metro area.
“We’ve been really fortunate in the past that we’ve been able to work with folks to purchase tickets to help them get back home and it’s definitely a process. It’s definitely not just as simple as getting on a bus,” Stone said.
Stone said teens who run away from tough home situations often find themselves in even more danger.
“With us being in Denver, we’re an epicenter where there is a lot of traffic happening around being close to a major interstate, a lot of people are coming and going, which makes us a huge risk for trafficking,” Stone said.
Greyhound also offers free tickets to parents or legal guardians who want to be reunited with their child if that child is under the age of 15.