Keep 13 Homeless Teens Off the Streets

  • by: Kaitlyn Boyd
  • recipient: Father Joe's Villages and the State of California

For almost 25 years the San Diego based non-profit organization Father Joe's Villages has supported a division in their program for unaccompanied homeless teenagers age 14- 18 years old at their Toussaint Academy building. This program had taken in teens rejected by their families, or whose parents were in jail, on drugs, or homeless themselves. Suddenly, and without warning, they have decided to close down the program because they claim they cannot fund the program any longer.

But the question is now, what happens to the teens currently living at Toussaint?

Well, the Village's plan is to find them housing wherever and wish the teens luck. No solid plan. No safe plan. No good plan.

We cannot let them jeopardize their lives. Father Joe's Villages made a commitment to take in, house, provide for, and develop these young people who have fallen into homeless not by any reason of their own fault. And now they want to send them back into situations where they may face devastation once again. These teens came from couch surfing, doing drugs, sleeping on the streets, skipping school and failing grades, with emotional problems to a stable environment, a bed to sleep in, sober living, good grades in school, finding jobs, and becoming healthier, self-sufficient, college bound young people.

Father Joe's Villages' aim is to end homelessness. One best way is to prevent it. And the best time is when they're young. Please don't let these kids be forced out of the place they've called home. Help us make the Village continue to support the 13 residents we currently have until they have reached adulthood. We're not asking to petition the Village to keep Toussaint Academy going forever, but to honor their commitment to the 13 lives they took in....These teens are not numbers or data on a spreadsheet....They are LIVES!

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