The Washington, DC metropolitan area has a large population of homeless youth, over 40% of which identify as LGBTQ. Considering that Friendship Place already provides services focused on homeless youth, a greater focus on LGBTQ homeless youth is simply a logical extension of our current efforts.
Friendship Place is in the process of securing funding that would allow us to further dedicate staff resources towards meeting the vital needs of this group. With only a few providers in the city to address the unique needs of homeless LGBTQ youth, a new program would fill the gaps.
Friendship Place is one of the only providers in the city with a long history of providing a wide array of homeless services throughout the region. We have an established record of success in starting small capacity pilot projects and building them into effective and sustainable programs.
Friendship Place has a diverse staff, including members who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, or Queer. We also emphasize LGBTQ awareness and competency training for our entire staff. Since its inception, Friendship Place has provided services to the LGBTQ community and has always been supportive of individuals who identify as LGBTQ. The city has a need for LGBTQ youth services; and Friendship Place has the tools, expertise, and commitment to address this critical need.
Friendship Place Spring Symposium: Young, LGBTQ & Homeless
In April 2017, we hosted a symposium about the local and national challenges of homelessness among LGBTQ youth and how organizations like Friendship Place are helping. “Young, LGBTQ & Homeless” including Ray Suarez, former host of Al Jazeera America’s Inside Story and the following panelists:
- Timothy V. Kane, MDiv, MTh, Associate Director of Inclusion Initiatives, Multicultural Student Services Center, George Washington University
- Leandrea D. Gilliam, Program Analyst & Housing Specialist, Executive Office of the Mayor
- Sean Read, Director of the Welcome Center, Friendship Place
- Diego Miguel Sanchez, APR, Director of Policy, PFLAG
- Kahlib Barton, Vice Chair, Young Black Gay Mens’ Leadership Initiative, and Member, National Youth Forum on Homelessness