Founded by transgender women of color, the Wanda Alston Foundation is dedicated to serving one of DC’s most vulnerable populations: LGBTQ youth (ages 16-24) who are experiencing homelessness. Located in Ward 7, the Foundation offers 18 months of shelter with 24-hour care and support. A clinical supervisor and case manager complete a full intake assessment and create individual service plans, which they revisit at weekly meetings with each resident. These youth have experienced trauma, rejection, discrimination, and more, so the Foundation partners with mental and behavioral health specialists to help residents heal and improve their well-being. Meanwhile, youth receive daily meals, take part in practical life-skills lessons, and get assistance with securing permanent housing or employment, or with continuing their education – whatever they need to chart a new path. Most importantly, they experience acceptance and love. Every kid deserves that.
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