Services provided within Safe Spaces work to promote self-esteem, increase social connectedness and resilience, and decrease risk for suicidal behaviors (and self-harm). Services are housed within a setting that provides safety, support, and allows youth to be their whole-selves within the space; not having to compartmentalize their various identities in order to fit in or feel safe. These spaces, called “Sanctuary Programs”, provide social and emotional support for LGBTQ youth who may be particularly vulnerable to or at elevated risk for violence, by connecting LGBTQ youth to needed services identified through individual assessment. Self-esteem and resilience are promoted among participating youth through the development of leadership skills, event planning, and opportunities for community engagement.
Our programs provide services and programming that are trauma-informed, utilizing Positive Youth Development in design and implementation, and include suicidal behavior prevention activities. In addition to LGBTQ youth, priority populations for the Safe Spaces program include: LGBTQ Youth of Color, Transgender Youth, Homeless/Unstably Housed/Unaccompanied LGBTQ Youth, LGBTQ Youth Aging Out of Services (DCF, DYS etc.), LGBTQ Youth with Disabilities, and Immigrant and Refugee LGBTQ youth.
For questions or comments please contact: Yves Singletary at Yves.Singletary@MassMail.State.MA.US or (617) 624-5844.
The D.C.-based LGBT youth services group SMYAL is scheduled to hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 19, to dedicate the official opening of its second transitional residential facility for homeless LGBT youth in a section of Ward 8 near Anacostia.
The newly built residential facility consists of a four-story apartment building with seven, two-bedroom apartments that will accommodate 14 residents, according SMYAL spokesperson Hancie Stokes.
Stokes said the facility includes office space for two case managers and four house monitors, at least one of whom will be on site 24 hours each day. She said each of the residential apartments includes two bedrooms, a kitchen, and a washer-dryer.
A statement released by SMYAL says the new facility is part of a SMYAL housing program that “provides safe and stable shelter, food, case management services, crisis intervention, and community support for its residents” of the ages 18-24.
Creating a region where LGBTQ+ people thrive means supporting the health and wellness of transitional aged youth (18-24 years old) experiencing homelessness with safe and affirming housing options. All services are free to youth but may have eligibility requirements.
Q-Spot Drop-In Center: 7-days a week, we offer LGBTQ+ youth a safe and brave space for social and emotional support through mental health respite and peer mentorship.
- Showers and Laundry
- Food and Clothing Closet
- Survival Supplies
- Outlets for Phone Charging, Computer Lab & WiFi
- LGBTQ+ Library
- Art Projects and Life-Skills Workshops
- HIV/HCV Testing
- Victim Services
All housing programs are accessed through Q-Spot. The STEP emergency shelter, TLP transitional living home, and Host Homes do NOT accept walk-up guests.
Short-Term Transitional Emergency Placement Programs (STEP): This program provides 24-hour shelter in community with an average 90-day stay that includes meals, clothing, and transportation assistance for youth ages 18-24 who have been victims of crime. Youth will receive assistance from case managers and advocates to obtain identification documents, access medical and mental health services, and navigate next step in their transition to more permanent housing.
Transitional Living Program (TLP): This program empowers 18-24-year-old youth who have been victims of crime with the support and life-skills they need to establish self-sufficiency. Youth are provided stable housing in community for up to 24-months that includes meals, clothing, transportation assistance, intensive case management, counseling, transportation, education and employment services, life skills workshops, and establishment of a support system that they can maintain after exiting the program.
Host Homes: This program provides bridge housing for 18-24-year-old youth in homes of community hosts. The length of stay is flexible, averaging 4-6 months. Youth are provided stable housing, meals, social/emotional support, and case management while making progress toward their life goals. FAQ sheet can be found here.
This program is funded in part by the Sacramento County Division of Behavioral Health Services through voter approved Proposition 63, Mental Health Services Act (MHSA), the California Office of Emergency Services (CalOES), City of Sacramento, and private community donors.