Seattle youth are experiencing homelessness at staggering rates. Sadly, their voices often go unheard.
The YMCA of Greater Seattle is the largest provider of housing for young adults experiencing homelessness in King County, providing 280 young people with a safe place to sleep on any given night. With your help, we can amplify their stories and band together to end youth and young adult homelessness.
Listen. Donate. Share.
Over the coming weeks, the Y will introduce different artists to tell the stories of youth experiencing homelessness in their words put to music. Listen and share their stories to bring awareness and an end to youth homelessness.
Gaining Hope – Tyreesha with artist SassyBlack
Tyreesha grew up in Vancouver, WA, and described her childhood as loving and filled with laughter. Upon graduating high school Tyreesha moved to Seattle to pursue a degree in Latin American and Caribbean studies at the University of Washington. During this time, she was employed by an overnight shelter for youth. Tyreesha was emotionally spent from her job, seeing firsthand how homelessness disproportionally affects certain populations. She met with artist SassyBlack to share her story. Stay tuned for SassyBlack's song!
Finding a Home – Xavier with artist ParisAlexa
Xavier made the ultimate sacrifice. He left his family at age 18 and became homeless so his family could continue to receive the government funds they needed. Xavier found hope through the Y. Singer-songwriter, ParisAlexa, met with Xavier to learn what he's been through and where he hopes to go next. Stay tuned for ParisAlexa's song!
Finding stability - Philip with artist Ryan Shannon
Philip left an unsafe home life and tried to make it on his own, but had few resources. He turned to the Y for support. With a roof over his head, a counselor to talk to, and job training - Philip found the stability he needed to grow. Local singer-songwriter, Ryan Shannon, sat down with Philip to hear his story. Together, they created a song that amplifies the voices of young adults experiencing homelessness.
Overcoming addiction – Ellen with artist LeRoy Bell
Ellen found herself surrounded by a crowd of drug users. She quickly became addicted to heroin at a young age, and which ultimately led her to a jail cell. After serving time, Ellen was referred by King County Drug Court to YAIT, the Y’s transitional housing facility downtown. Ellen talked with artist LeRoy Bell. Stay tuned for a song by LeRoy that sheds light on Ellen's story.
Managing Mental Illness - Peter with artist Scarlet Parke
At a young age, Peter was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and depression. His parents lacked the resources to care for him, so at the age of seven they sent him off to multiple institutions around the county in hopes that he could find the care he needed. When he turned 18, Peter lived with his uncle in Washington for a brief period, but was kicked out and left to find housing of his own. Peter sat down with artist Scarlet Parke. Stay tuned for a song by Scarlet that amplifies Peter's story.