On March 6, The Robins Foundation announced the award of the 2019 Lora M. and E. Claiborne Robins, Sr. Community Innovation Grant of $500,000 to Commonwealth Catholic Charities to support the Youth Housing Stability Project. The project is a partnership between CCC, Advocates for Richmond Youth, The United Way of Greater Richmond and Petersburg, and VCU School of Social Work.
“Commonwealth Catholic Charities is committed to ending homelessness across our service area and we have learned from youth with a lived experience of homelessness about the gap in housing services for this population—we are honored to be a part of this project which has been developed and led by young people,” said CCC CEO, Jay Brown.
With the support of the Robins Foundation grant, the project will address the needs of an often invisible population of homeless and housing unstable youth in the Richmond and Greater Richmond areas.
Plans for the Youth Housing Stability Project include building a network of community resources, providing a physical space where youth can be safe, identifying and helping at-risk youth, and research and innovation to ultimately end youth homelessness in Richmond.
"In Richmond we see hundreds of youth facing homelessness and housing instability every year. What we don’t know is how many other young people aren’t coming forward because they are uncomfortable engaging with the existing homeless service system," said CCC’s Abby Boyd, Director, Supportive Housing & Homeless Services "By developing this brilliant partnership across sectors and providers and creating a physical space that is designed and staffed by young people, we are hoping to send the message to any youth experiencing homelessness that we are available to help. ”