Preserving and Transitioning Homeless Youth and Adolescent Services
Special Projects Fund
November 23, 2010
WebsiteSEE GRANT OUTCOMES
The Metropolitan Community Church of New York (MCCNY) pioneered one of the most replicable programs in the world for addressing the needs of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning/Intersex (LGBTQI) runaway and homeless youth.
This program blends case management with medical and psychiatric services and is critical to combating recidivism and other common problems within the homeless LGBTQI youth population. These youth frequently report higher rates of mental illness and past trauma than their heterosexual counterparts: nearly three-fourths meet the criteria for a mood disorder, and one-fourth have attempted suicide. For several years, MCCNY partnered with St. Vincent’s School of Adolescent Medicine to provide on-site clinical services However, the school’s subsequent closure threatened the future of this program. In 2010, the New York Health Foundation (NYHealth) awarded a grant to MCCNY to sustain its quality medical services while it developed a partnership with another clinical provider. In addition, MCCNY arranged to receive several social work interns each year from Hunter College. Until MCCNY fully realized its’ new partnership, it relied on NYHealth funds to continue to provide behavioral health services for its homeless and runaway LGBTQI youth.
This project allows MCC to continue providing quality primary and behavioral health care to highly vulnerable LGBTQ homeless youth while it establishes an ongoing partnership with another clinical provider. The grant supports an interim clinic coordinator, who is responsible for overseeing the operations of the clinic three days a week; maintaining appropriate records and data collection tools for the clinic; acting as a liaison for youth seeking medical services both within and beyond the on-site clinic; and securing ongoing partnerships to sustain the clinic after the end of the project year. The project also supports a psychiatric nurse practitioner, who is responsible for completing initial mental health assessments for all new intakes; developing treatment plans for each youth to include on-site and inpatient care as needed; overseeing the activities of five CUNY Hunter College counseling interns as a new partnership is solidified; and developing community partnerships to sustain ongoing culturally competent mental health services for this population.