A lot has changed since Larkin Street opened its doors in 1984. From a small storefront at 1040 Larkin Street that served just over 100 teens to a multi-site and multi-service organization that reaches nearly 2,500 young people annually, Larkin Street has truly made an impact on the homelessness crisis in our City. This is thanks, in large part, to all of you – supporters, board members, staff and volunteers. Thank you for all you do and have done!
As we look back on 35 years of helping young people reach their potential, we’re also looking ahead. Earlier this year, we launched our strategic planning work, the process which will inform our service model and priorities over the next five years. Once again, a steering committee composed of staff from all levels, board members, and, for the first time ever, young people from Larkin Street, will lead this work.
We’ve always believed in a client-centered approach, but now, young people actually sit at the table, with an equal voice to everyone else in the room. And we’re already getting better results. For example, our clients told us we needed a specialized housing program for transgender youth. Two months ago, through an expansion of our Castro Youth Housing Initiative, we launched that program.
Just as important as authentic youth leadership throughout our services are investments in research, data, and innovation. We’re thrilled to share we’ve recently completed our first-ever external evaluation of our services. This process, too, was deep and iterative, including both staff and youth, and reinforced our vision and collective values as the foundation of our success.
Throughout all of these efforts, we continue to hold not only the hope, but the belief, that we can end youth homelessness. Though Larkin Street has grown and changed since 1984, our mission has not. Working in community, we can ensure that all young people have the chance to reach their potential.
Thank you for joining us in this work.
Sherilyn Adams Executive Director
Larkin Street Youth Services