Golden 1 Credit Union in Sacramento, Calif., has made a $1 million pledge to its local homeless youth population, and with that investment will address a heartbreaking social crisis.
The $11.1 billion asset credit union will contribute $1 million over the next three years to Wind Youth Services to fund a 24-hour youth counseling center that co-locates providers and offers multiple services in a one-stop location.
The project aims to prevent youth homelessness in Sacramento and improve youths’ well-being.
“When we talked to experts, we were particularly struck by the number of youth that slept on the streets each night,” says Erica Taylor, Golden 1’s vice president of communications and community relations. “We thought we could help provide a solution. That’s when we started a conversation with Wind Youth Services, and the product of those conversations was the youth counseling center.”
The center will focus on early intervention and prevention.
“The idea is to step in early and ultimately prevent homelessness,” Taylor says. “When a youth is in crisis, he or she can go to the center and immediately be matched with services or reunified with family members. If we can intervene quickly enough, they won’t become chronically homeless.”
Led by Wind Youth Services, the center will house programs offered by other social service organizations, including Lutheran Social Services, Goodwill, and Waking the Village, which also provides services for the homeless population.
Together, the agencies will provide immediate access to safety services, mental health counseling, career and education services, and permanent housing resources.