The new “Hub” in San José will be an innovative model that integrates affordable housing services for young people leaving foster homes
SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF.— Demolition began this week at a large site in San José, paving the way for a new community center for foster youth that will incorporate two important county goals: providing housing for youth in foster care and connect to essential services such as vocational training, education programs and health and wellness resources. The Hub will be a one-stop-shop designed by and for youth placed up to the age of 24, according to county leaders.
“We are starting from scratch with the new Hub and our host youth will help design it for their specific needs. They are children with a high level of need and very little support, which makes them vulnerable. With more resources and housing, they will feel safe and be surrounded by caring adults who can help them with everything from asking for help at college to making sure they have clean clothes, ”he said. County Supervisor Cindy Chavez said.
The new Hub, which is built on 1.6 acres located at 1510-1540 Parkmoor Avenue in San José, will replace the current Community Youth Center at 591 N. King Road. The look and feel of the building will incorporate feedback from host family youth and focus on home-like features, such as an outdoor area, garden and barbecue area for gatherings and a play area. for children.
One of the biggest accolades of the new center will be the addition of affordable housing, which will be built on the upper floors of the Hub. Some of the units will go to foster families, with plans for a housing program that offers case management and subsidies for transportation, food, clothing and utilities. One of the county’s main goals in deciding the new location for the center was to find a property that could accommodate housing.
“We know that having services is not enough and that housing is a critical component if we are to truly make an impact,” said Jeffrey V. Smith, County General Manager, JD. “We want our young people to feel valued, to be empowered to learn life skills, to have access to health care and, just as important, we want them to have a safe place to sleep at night.
In Santa Clara County, about a third of homeless youth and young adults assessed in the past year said they had gone through the foster care system, according to data from Homeless Management. Information System (HMIS).
“We know that among the youth in our area there is an overlap when it comes to homelessness and foster care,” said Consuelo Hernández, director of the Santa Clara County Supportive Housing Office. “The 2020-2025 Community Plan to end homelessness calls for tailor-made programs to help homeless youth and young adults. One of the main obstacles to seeking services is not having a stable home. When our young people in foster care can stop worrying about where they will sleep at night, they can focus on finding help to rebuild and strengthen other areas of their lives.
When the new Hub opens in 2024, the ground floor will house services focused on self-reliance, including housing and education support, financial literacy, career development and skills training, physical and mental health and social and cultural workshops. There will be access to computers and printers, assistance with scholarship and financial aid applications, showers and laundry facilities, and planned activities led by the Youth Leadership Council.
“Incorporating housing into the hub will have a huge impact on our youth in foster care,” said Daniel Little, director of the county’s family and children’s services department. “Having housing and services all together in a space that they can feel is their own – this is essential in creating opportunities for young people to become successful and functioning adults in our community. “
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The Santa Clara County government serves a diverse and multicultural population of 1.9 million people in Santa Clara County, California, making it more populous than 14 states in the United States. The county provides essential services to its residents, including public health protection, environmental stewardship, medical services through the Santa Clara County health system, child and adult protection services, prevention and solutions to the ‘homelessness, roads, park services, libraries, emergency disaster response, protection of minority communities and those at risk, access to a fair criminal justice system and many other public benefits.
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Media contact: María Leticia Gómez / Quan Vu, Office of Communications and Public Affairs, (408) 299-5119, [email protected]
Posted: November 1, 2021