YMCA Safe Place program fighting for funding to continue serving young adults
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Louisville YMCA’s Safe Place is fighting to maintain programming for their young adults. The funding issues come at the same time as a city-wide effort to get 100 homeless young adults off the streets in 100 days.
Inside the Youth Development Center at YMCA's Safe Place on Thursday there was a celebration. Mayor Greg Fischer announced the city was able to move 112 young adults off of the streets and into more stable housing since August 1.
It was a collaboration between several different agencies. Safe Place's Street Outreach Program lead the way.
"It’s really designed to be a one stop shop for our young adults to be able to come and have a safe space to begin to map out their plan to get back on their feet or get on their feet in a more sustainable way,” YMCA Safe Place Senior Program Director Tricia Eskridge said.
The program works in three different components—street outreach, the drop-in campus, and case management.
YMCA’s Safe Place has been serving young adults for more than 40 years.
"It’s a part of our foundation, it a part of what we do, it’s a part of what’s important to us,” Eskridge said.
But now it’s also part of a federal funding issue so stifling it could bring the program to an end.
"One of the things that we rely on a great deal for the street outreach program is the federal funding and that landscape is changing. It’s more competitive and we’re making some difficult decisions about how to maintain programming,” Eskridge said.
Last month, program leaders warned staff they may be shutting down at the end of the year.
"It would be a real loss to not have that ability to build those relationships and support when the kids fall and when they're succeeding and that's kind of what we do here,” Eskridge said.
Program leaders said since the announcement they have been working with several other organizations in hopes of saving the program and maintaining the services.
At this time, they aren’t certain what the final outcome will be.