Multicultural News

Indy welcomes Trinity Haven, state’s first residential program for homeless LGBTQ youth

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indianapolis is now home to the state’s first residential program focused on LGBTQ youth and young adults: Trinity Haven. It’s taken a few years and bumps in the road to get here but organizers said the wait is worth it.

Roughly 40% of homeless youth identify as LGBTQ. Housing insecurity for LGBTQ youth is often an invisible problem. But the impact of those living it is very much real. For the young people who come to Trinity Haven the hope is that it’ll be a safe haven.

Trinity Haven is setting up to be more than that. It’s a home that’s able to accommodate eight young people navigating life as LGBTQ persons.

“May this moment be the first of many where they know they have a home. A place where they are safe and welcome. And celebrated for exactly who they are,” said executive director Jenni White to the supporters who gathered for Trinity Haven’s ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday.

Trinity Haven is starting two residential programs. One is the transitional living program where residents 16-21 years old will live for two years. Coming soon is the host homes program where residents 16-24 years old will be partnered with host families.

“As we share a common humanity and higher purpose. I do thank God for community and the love that we share for each other,” said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett.

All of the people who packed the lawn during the ceremony played a part in making Trinity Haven a reality. From financial assistance, to time, and even prayers.

“It’s something very close and personal to me with me being transient,” said house director Lakecia Walton.

Walton moved around a lot.

“It’s very touching and enduring because I wish for something like this for me when I was growing up and didn’t know who to turn or where to be,” Walton said.

Walton is one of the two on-site staff members. Walton is already seeing great things from the two residents who’ve already moved in.

“Not only giving them a place to call home but giving them just a little home filled with love, acceptance and everything that they have been missing,” Walton said.

In recognition of Trinity Haven’s opening, anonymous donors have vowed to match donations up to $25,000.