Downtown Seattle's Only Shelter for Young Homeless Adults Closing

Nov 6, 2013

The only overnight shelter for young adults in downtown Seattle is about to close due to money troubles.

YouthCare says funding from a private grant has run out and as a result, its 20-bed shelter will close in January.

At the bottom of Seattle's Capitol Hill sits a bright-green building you can’t miss. It’s the home of YouthCare, which offers job training, counseling, and food to young adults in need. And for the past three years, it has also operated an overnight shelter for the 18- to 24-year-olds.

Hedda McLendon, YouthCare's program director, says there's a reason why young adults need a shelter exclusively for people their own age.

"Many of the homeless youth in our community are homeless because they've had negative experiences with adults in their lives. Sometimes they’ve been abused or traumatized. Many of them will tell us, 'I would rather stay on the streets than stay in an adult shelter because I don’t feel safe,'" McLendon said.

YouthCare’s shelter, which served 268 young adults last year, needs $350,00 in order to keep its nightly facility open into the new year.

Two other shelters in King County in the U-District and in Redmond offer beds to young adults.