A local HIV/AIDS service organization recently shut down its youth drop-in facilities.
In August, Philadelphia FIGHT shuttered Y-HEP’s (Youth Health Empowerment Project) Drop-In Center to transition participants to other services.
FIGHT’s Y-HEP sponsored a drop-in center since 2011 and has provided necessities to at-risk youth, including food, toiletries, clothing, laundry services and a shower. Though the drop-in center was discontinued, the Y-HEP Health Center will continue to provide primary-care services, sexual and reproductive-health services and other counseling services.
A FIGHT spokesperson told PGN the organization will provide funding to “four specialized agencies,” including The Attic Youth Center, COLOURS, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and Methodist Services. The spokesperson declined to comment on funding specifics.
FIGHT finalized the latter partnership last week. According to the statement, “Methodist Services will focus resources toward developing 15 units of housing at 1307 Locust St. in Philadelphia to address housing and social-service needs of LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness and housing instability, particularly LGBTQ young adults.
“Our continued financial support and strategic oversight reaffirm our commitment to developing youth-friendly spaces throughout our Philadelphia FIGHT locations,” the organization added in the statement. “Simply put, these well-established, youth-serving, local agencies are better equipped to provide specific youth drop-in and housing services for LGBTQ youth.”
FIGHT will also relocate its Y-HEP Health Center to 1207 Chestnut St. in 2018. The center will expand under the umbrella of its new Pediatric and Adolescent Health Center.