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Lost-N-Found Youth Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services

Mission: Lost-n-found youth is an atlanta, georgia based nonprofit (501c3) that exists to end homelessness for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (lgbtq+) and all sexual minority youth.

Programs: Emergency services: the emergency services program is designed to be the first step in the continuum of assistance to prevent homelessness and enable homeless youth as they move towards independence and stable housing. Emergency services provided by lnfy include street outreach, day shelter, emergency beds and rapid rehousing. Emergency housing: lost-n-found youth's provides the emergency housing program to meet the immediate housing needs of homeless youths, up to 90 days, or until our case managers locate a stable alternative living arrangement for the client. During the client's time at lost-n-found emergency house, youth have 3 square meals per day, clothing, and the range of services provided through the lnfy youth center. Presently lost-n-found youth maintains two emergency beds which housed 249 individuals in 2017. Outside emergency housing: lgbt youth represent roughly 1,000 of the youth living on the streets in atlanta. Because of limited space in its housing program it is often necessary to house youth in other facilities until a bed becomes available in the youth house or in a more long-term partner facility depending on available funds, lnfy will pay for up to 1 month of housing at outside shelters while clients work with case management staff to identify more stable housing. Homeless youth services center (youth center): the youth center is first and foremost a safe haven which provides a variety of services including showers, laundry, breakfast & lunch, hygiene kits, shelf stable food packs, clothing vouchers, lost id document assistance, public transportation vouchers, mental health counseling, case management services, linkage to healthcare, linkage to mental healthcare, life-skills training, job readiness training, recreational opportunities and access the youth house (for overnight services). During 2017 the youth center served between 18 and 25 clients per day and 421 clients total. These 421 clients, of which 270 were new intakes, accessed the center's services 6,513 times. The youth center allows youth to get off the streets for up to 8 hours per day and take a break from homelessness. Clients can rest, charge their phones, use the rest room, use the internet, have a hot cup of coffee or tea, talk to a supportive adult "center host" volunteer or just get in out of the cold or stifling heat. Outreach: the lnfy street outreach team provides services to homeless lgbt youth not residing in housing operated by the lnfy. The street outreach team conducts outreach to unsheltered homeless youth, to link clients with housing or other necessary services, and provide ongoing support. During street outreach the street outreach team distributes warm coats, blankets and sleeping bags, shelf stable food packs, hygiene kits and information about lnfy youth center. Street outreach volunteers also provide referrals to emergency housing and other supportive services. During 2017 more than 3,000 outreach contacts were made by the outreach team. 24 hour emergency hotline: lnfy operates a volunteer run 24-hour emergency hotline. For most of lnfy's lgbt homeless youth clients the hotline is the first point of contact. Hotline counselors assess and triage youth needs, create referrals to partner organizations, and initiate the programs intake process. Homelessness prevention/case management: lnfy case managers work with clients to provide: housing relocation and stabilization services, and short- and medium-term rental assistance to prevent a client from becoming homeless. Through the homelessness prevention program lnfy helps clients at-risk of homelessness to maintain their existing housing or transition to new permanent housing. This program is reliant on the availability of funds.

transitional housing: transitional housing (th) is designed to provide homeless individuals with interim stability and support to successfully move to and maintain permanent housing. Youth house: the youth house is a 6-bed facility located in atlanta's historic westend which houses youth for up to 6 months while they build their individual capacity for independence, self sufficiency and permanent housing. While enrolled in the youth house youth are required to secure and maintain full time employment, save 60% of their earning, abstain from drugs and alcohol, meet twice per week with case managers, and comply with all curfews and rules of the house. In 2017 lnfy's youth house provided 2,688 nights of transitional and emergency housing for 39 and 259 clients respectively. Rapid rehousing: rapid re-housing is an intervention designed to help individuals and families quickly exit homelessness and return to permanent housing. Rapid re-housing assistance is offered without preconditions - like employment, income, absence of criminal record, or sobriety - and the resources and services provided are tailored to the unique needs of the household. Beginning in 2018 lnfy will partner with chris180 to provide rapid rehousing units specifically for lgbt youth in metro atlanta.

thrift store: the corporate offices of lnfy are located at 2585 chantilly drive inside of the lost-n-found thrift (thrift store) store. In addition to corporate offices the thrift store is a donation center and serves as the first point of contact for many volunteers, donors and clients. The thrift store also house several of the services provided to homeless clients by lnfy. Laundry: homeless youth clients have access to laundry services located at the thrift store. The laundry room is equipped with washers (2), dryers (2), folding station, and complimentary laundry soap. Any registered lnfy client with a referral from a lnfy case manager can bring up to four loads per day to wash at lnfy for absolutely no cost. Because the laundry room doubles as a break room for the thrift store employees it is stocked with coffee, tea, water and pastries for clients and employees. Linens for the youth house and youth center shower and other program related laundry is cared for at the thrift store laundry room. Showers: the thrift store houses one of two client showers. With a referral from a lnfy case manager clients have access to free, safe shower facilities equipped with complimentary toiletries and clean linens. Clothing vouchers: lnfy provides free clothing and shoes to its homeless and at-risk clients. With a voucher from the youth center lnfy clients shop for the apparel of their choice. In 2017 lnfy provided 28,000 in voucher sales to provide warm, dry, and clean clothes to our homeless and at-risk clients. Apartment packs: when clients are ready to move into stable and independent housing on their own lnfy provides many of the start-up essentials necessary for a new household. Each year lnf thrift store provides graduates with between 10 and 12 apartment packs, provided from the which include: -pots & pans -dishes -towels -sheets and linens -blankets & comforters -small kitchen appliances -furniture (beds, couches, dining tables and chairs etc. ) -shampoos, conditioner, soap, and other essential toiletries -cleaning supplies food pantry: managed by thrift store lnfy maintains a 500 square feet food pantry which supplies most of the food served at the youth services center, the youth house, and distributed in the shelf stable food packs. With a referral from a case manager or an apartment pack voucher lnfy clients are provided with starting pantries for new stable and independent homes.

Community Stories

1 Story from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Donor

Rating: 5

This organization has a wonderful mission to help LGBTQ youth. I have supported them for years. Since they opened a thrift store in Midtown Atlanta, all our clothing and other donations that once went to other thrift stores now are exclusively given to Lost-N-Found. I like knowing that what we give is being used to help people who need it most right here at home.