Love All Serve Art: An Art Show By The Young People Of My Friend’s Place

RSVP by April 21 by e-mail development@myfriendsplace.org

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The ELC Presents Legendary Drag Bingo

Are you feeling lucky?! The Emerging Leaders Council of My Friend’s Place is excited to present a special evening of Legendary Bingo (aka Drag Queen Bingo), benefitting the homeless youth services at My Friend’s Place! Join us for what is sure to be a hilarious evening of bingo and fun on April 12!

A $20 suggested donation gets you 10 games of bingo hosted by the sassy and fabulous Legendary Bingo queens, the chance to win amazing prizes and bid on exclusive auction items–all for a great cause!

For 29 years and counting, My Friend’s Place has been assisting and inspiring homeless youth to build self-sufficient lives. My Friend’s Place offers a comprehensive continuum of services to homeless youth between the ages of 12 and 25, and their children, helping our homeless young people to move toward wellness, stability and self-sufficiency.

The ELC is a passionate group of young professionals and community members dedicated to advancing the mission of My Friend’s Place through unique volunteer opportunities, fundraising and exciting social events, while playing a vital role in furthering the conversation about ending youth homelessness. Check out more at myfriendsplace.org/elc

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Clothing For Every Body

body positive fruitFeeling good about your body and the way you look is challenging enough under the best of circumstances. For our young people experiencing homelessness, body positivity can be particularly challenging, with greater struggle to find well-fitting clothing.

In an effort to help our young people feel and look their best, we are asking our community for help! If you, your friends or your colleagues have men’s or women’s plus size clothing—especially pants and jeans—please drop them at My Friend’s Place. Just as our services are not one size fits all, the clothing options for our young people shouldn’t be either. We accept clothing donations Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., at the visitor’s entrance located at the back of My Friend’s Place. For more information, contact Dana Rust, Development Assistant, at (323) 908-0011 ext. 124 or drust@myfriendsplace.org.

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Animal Companions: Connection and Compassion

Baby GurlIf you’ve had the opportunity to visit My Friend’s Place, chances are you met one of our beloved animals even before having the opportunity to meet our youth. But did you know that My Friend’s Place is one of the few resource centers in Los Angeles where homeless young people’s pets are not only welcomed, but also cared for? Animal companions like Baby Gurl, left, a 6-month-old Blue Nose Pitbull, provide our young people with opportunities to create healthy relationships, receive unconditional love, practice responsibility, emotional regulation and future planning.

Baby Gurl’s young owner, for example, had experienced trauma in the foster care system and was struggling with forming positive relationships in his life. Baby Gurl gave him access to a healthy and loving relationship in which he did not fear abandonment or abuse. My Friend’s Place has been able to offer Baby Gurl access to a veterinary wellness exam, as well as cover the cost of her shots and vaccinations. Our young people’s love for their animals is such a beautiful place of partnership for My Friend’s Place, one where we can support our youth as they gain necessary life skills while also supporting the health and well-being of our four-legged and finned friends.

Thanks to the Happy Hippie Foundation’s continued partnership, My Friend’s Place is able to provide young pet owners with essential resources, as well as assist with critical veterinary care and treatment such as neuter/spay, vaccinations, and injury care. You can help too by providing dog and cat food, leashes, collars, carriers and other pet necessities. For more information, contact Dana Rust, Development Assistant, at (323) 908-0011 ext. 124 or drust@myfriendsplace.org.

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S. Mark Taper Foundation Awards $100,000 Grant To My Friend’s Place

We are excited to announce that My Friend’s Place has been awarded a $100,000 grant from the S. Mark Taper Foundation. This grant will help support My Friend’s Place’s comprehensive continuum of care helping youth ages 12 to 25 experiencing homelessness in Los Angeles move toward lives of wellness, stability and self- sufficiency. Founded in 1988 as a volunteer-led mobile meal program, My Friend’s Place today is a thriving, professionally staffed resource center and day shelter serving more than 1,400 homeless youth ages 12 to 25 and their children each year, with the primary goal of lowering traditional barriers to service and providing homeless youth with the opportunity to improve their psychological, intellectual and physical capacity to reach their potential.

This gift from the S. Mark Taper Foundation comes at an exciting time for My Friend’s Place with the launch of “The Shift,” an intensive new employment readiness pilot program that provides homeless youth who have little to no prior work experience with case management and supportive services, opportunities for social emotional learning and development, work-related skill building and experiential learning opportunities. Each young person enrolled in“The Shift” will participate in 22 weeks of case management, specialized weekly support with an Employment Specialist and more than 150 hours of paid, onsite experiential learning. “The Shift,” which is enrolling 20 to 30 youth in program’s first year, provides a structured and intentional set of youth career development activities to help youth gain the skills and motivation they need to successfully engage in further workforce development opportunities.

“We are deeply appreciative of the support of the S. Mark Taper Foundation as we work to provide programming to transform the lives of some of the most vulnerable young members of our community,” said Heather Carmichael, My Friend’s Place’s Executive Director. “The S. Mark Taper Foundation’s support truly strengthens our ability to create opportunities and lasting impact in the lives of youth experiencing homelessness here in Los Angeles.”

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