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Lydia's House in Southeast Washington DC

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services, Homeless & Housing, Human Services, Personal Social Services, Temporary Housing

Mission: Our mission is "Growing Children, Strengthening Families and Changing Neighborhoods" to ensure that low income at risk families receive quality services, when they need them, regardless of why, from caring people. Lydia''s House, established in 1990 by Eugene and Patrice Sheppard, takes a holistic approach to family development and provides multi-faceted services to end the cycle of poverty. Over the past 16 years, Lydia''s House has grown to provide youth intervention services, including a homework center for children ages 6-12, tutoring, and mentoring for youth ages 13-17, teen parenting/ pregnancy prevention. Lydia''s House adult intervention services include adult literacy , entrepreneurial development, computer training, substance abuse prevention counseling and housing for seniors.Their work with families living in far southwest and southeast neighborhoods of Anacostia, Bellevue, Congress Heights and Washington Highland began in 1989 at a shelter for homeless families. Under their leadership, Lydia''s House has served hundreds of families, often paying rent to prevent eviction, providing food and paying utility bills. Lydia''s House provides fist time homebuyer training and works with lenders, real estate brokers and other industry partners to promote home ownership.

Programs: Lydia's House major operating programs include Housing Counseling Services that provide very low, low and moderate income families professional support to achieve homeownership, prevent foreclosure and eviction in the case of renters; and increase the number of families using banking services. We conduct weekly workshops for first time homebuyers, and financial literacy workshops.Lydia's House provides affordable rental units to senior citizens.Out of School programs for children ages 6-12; entrepreneurial and job training for youth ages 13-21; adult career development and literacy; and housing counseling services.Youth Zone, an after school enrichment program for children ages 6-12. The overreaching goals of the the Youth Zone are to: improve grades in reading and mathematics, reduce youth on youth violence, and increase school and community interaction. The program objectives are to provide a safe, fun structured environment during critical after school hours, provide direct support to allow children to complete daily homework assignments, ensure that each child knows the 44 sounds necessary to read english, ensure that each child learns addition, subtraction, multiplication facts, and improve garages. Promote environmental stewardship through a series of indoor and outdoor hands on projects, Youth Zone is open from 3:00-7:00 pm Monday through Friday. Children participate in peer mediation, conflict resolution training as well as self-esteem building to gain skills necessary to avoid violence. During the summer, Lydia's House operates "Kids Kamp" and provides a seven week summer enrichment program for 200 children ages.Tech Zone provides a technology based entrepreneurial training for youth ages 13-21 as well as personal development and career options that lead to work and/or self-employment. The program objectives include: provide low income at risk students and adults access to technology and business incubator support, increase employability of students and adults, assist program participant's to meet school to career and welfare to work competence and provide youth and adults with the skill training necessary to get jobs.Housing Counseling Services provide very low, low and moderate income families professional support to achieve homeownership, prevent foreclosure and eviction in the case of renters, and increase the number of families using banking services.Lydia's House provides affordable rental units to senior citizens.

Community Stories

1 Story from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Rating: 5

Have known the Sheppards for 20 plus years. Have had the awesome opportunity to see families grow and benefit not only from the programs Lydias house provides but the mentorship that comes along naturally when investing in a community.

My decision to support Lydias House via Combined Federal Campaign was an easy one!