The homeless youth project has for several years offered an innovative and comprehensive street outreach program, including youth counseling and intake services. Casa Libre collaborates with various community-based organizations serving immigrant communities throughout Los Angeles County. Community-based groups are aware of Casa Libre's services and from time to time refer detained or homeless unaccompanied minors to the program.
Youth without homes or living in emergency shelters are identified and evaluated for possible participation in the Casa Libre program. Homeless and at-risk youth are also provided food, crisis counseling, and referrals to agencies providing low or no-cost services. Youth are carefully evaluated through a rigorous intake process prior to admission to the Casa Libre/Freedom House program.
The Casa Libre/Freedom House program has developed mechanisms to legalize the immigration status of its residents who have been abused, abandoned or neglected abroad or following their entry into the United States. Once legalized, Casa Libre's residents and former residents become eligible for a wide range of social services, and for the first time can afford to continue their education beyond high school and may be lawfully employed.
Social Mobility Services
The overall goal of the program is to assist immigrant and at-risk youth in our communities to achieve stability, safe housing, and maximize their access to continuing education. Our workshops have included a range of subjects to encourage and enhance participants' educational and vocational abilities, self-esteem, leadership, and interpersonal skills.
Supportive services begin with an in-depth assessment of each new community member and their needs. Through information obtained during initial intake and subsequent follow-up with youth members, we learn what the most significant issues our community is facing are and plan programs on how to combat these issues. The participation of at-risk youth in goal setting regarding education and/or employment is a critical component of the program. Youth are encouraged to set realistic and attainable goals for themselves, consistent with their interests and abilities.
Supportive services are made available to assist youth in the implementation of their individualized personal plans, including:
Basic life skills training
Interpersonal skills development
Educational testing and placement
These services have been provided by our program to assist and guide our immigrant and at-risk youth to achieve longterm stability and to maximize the fulfilment of their opportunities.
Family reunification services
Multimedia Youth Center
The goal of the planned Casa Libre Multimedia Center is to provide homeless and at-risk youth at Casa Libre and homeless children residing at other local shelters opportunities to study and learn multimedia skills including music, film, and photography, and to find avenues for these children for artistic self-expression.
Until the site has been renovated, a preliminary multi-media program
has been established at Casa Libre. The program currently has new
computers, music, and recording equipment available for participants
to use. Staff and volunteers will teach program participants skills in
computer technology, musical instruments, photography, etc.
The objectives of the planned Casa Libre Multimedia Center are:
Provide opportunities for self-expression through the arts;
Provide incentives to continue their education in the arts and related subjects;
To provide workshops in the areas of music, film, and photography in order to prepare youth for possible internships or employment in these or related areas of work.
Activities at Casa Libre