The True Community Award honors one community that’s going above and beyond to end LGBTQ youth homelessness.
Every year at the True Colors Fund’s Impact Summit, we’re proud to honor leaders working to end lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth homelessness. Our True Community Award recognizes one community that’s going above and beyond in the movement to end homelessness LGBTQ youth.
The 2018 True Community Award nominees are…
Traverse City, MI
After being awarded funds for Round One of the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project (YHDP), Northwest Michigan was tasked with developing a regionally based Continuum of Care (CoC) that incorporated a Youth Action Board (YAB). Once awarded, they were unsure of how to work around the geographical challenges that exist in the rural area. Traverse City utilized the existing YAB in their city to leverage relationships with other community stakeholders. Despite this effort, they were still experiencing challenges with recruitment and retention for the YAB. With a little support from the True Colors Fund and our technical assistance partners, Traverse City was able to develop a robust YAB that is actively working to be fully integrated in the CoC.
Philadelphia has been nominated for the True Award due to their participation in the first-ever Pride Challenge in which over 600 local service provider employees were trained on LGBTQ youth homelessness. The community has also shown interest in engaging in community-wide strategic planning to end LGBTQ youth homelessness. Philadelphia also chose to embark on their own 100-Day Challenge to end homelessness – an initiative to house as many young people as possible in a short amount of time. This further demonstrates Philly’s dedication and initiative!
Boston has been nominated for the community’s work to meaningfully collaborate with youth and young adults with lived experience. It’s important that young people have equal decision-making authority in the systems designed to serve them. Boston is doing a great job at that. Many of Boston’s YAB tenets mirror the awesome standards set by our National Youth Forum on Homelessness and are reflective of their community as a whole. Boston is also a YHDP Grantee. This year, the community is conducting a challenge of it’s own to aggressively house 75 youth and young adults, demonstrating drive and innovation and showing how a community can capitalize on available resources.
Connecticut’s Youth Action HUB is the driving force behind the solutions in this community. They’re also all young people! Unlike many other typical YABs, the Youth Action HUB is research based, performing multiple regional efforts on data collection and analysis. The youth in Connecticut who are a part of this work have begun to be recognized nationally and have had multiple opportunities to present their work to be replicated in other communities. Outside of remaining youth centered, Connecticut BOS has a YAB that truly reflects the young people in their community.
Which community will take the True Award home?
Find out at the Impact Summit: the international gathering on LGBTQ youth homelessness. It all goes down October 3-4 in Atlanta, GA! See you there? Click here to learn more and register!