Connecting the Community

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Above image: SPY Outreach and Engagement Case Manager Rob Hanna on Venice Beach

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The holidays can be an especially challenging time for homeless youth. So this Sunday, November 13, Safe Place for Youth (S.P.Y) will open their doors at 2469 Lincoln Boulevard, inviting the Venice community to join their Family Connect Day.

The day is about coming together “with your family, friends, and neighbors and be a part of the solution to ending youth homelessness in our community,” says Executive Director & Founder Alison Hurst.

According to the Los Angeles Housing Authority’s 2015 Homeless Youth Count report, there are approximately 6,150 homeless youth on the streets any given night in LA County.

S.P.Y says young people often find themselves homeless or at-risk of homelessness through no fault of their own, and they are among the marginalized and under-served youth in our community.

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A safe place for youth on Lincoln Boulevard in Venice

The organization has found that 59% of homeless young people in Venice have either been kicked out by a parent or caregiver. Many have run away from unbearable home environments that include physical and sexual abuse, homophobia or transphobia, parental mental illness or substance abuse, and 23% reported previous involvement in the foster care system.

Homeless youth deal with a complex set of issues related to disconnection from family and community, abuse and neglect, significant past trauma, grief and loss, mental illness, and criminalization. S.P.Y says this typically translates into few prospects for education, employment or social participation and can manifest into psychological distress and trauma.

The organization aims to provide housing and support services that help young adults learn to care for themselves, gain life experience and transition to adulthood.

See how you can help S.P.Y fight youth homelessness in Venice Beach.

If you’re planning to go, S.P.Y is asking you bring along a few items to help stock their supplies. New sleeping bags, new socks, and new underwear are in high demand. As is travel size hygiene products like; toothbrushes, toothpaste, floss, razors, combs, deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, lip balm, sunscreen, tampons, maxi-pads, menstrual cups, condoms, band-aids, airborne or cold remedies, and hand sanitizer.

The Family Connect Day is this Sunday, November 13, from 3-5pm at Safe Place for Youth 2469 Lincoln Blvd. Venice. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.

RSVP to: [email protected]

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