HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Twice a week in Montrose, LGBTQ+ youth experiencing homelessness can find a lifeline at Grace Place.
"This space is created to foster safety, (and) nourishment," said programming director Chaunteion Hall.
For 12 years, the nonprofit has not only offered free home-cooked meals in a family-style setting, but a range of activities and resources to help vulnerable youth of all sexualities and genders, ages 13-24.
Each Monday and Thursday night at 6 p.m., the halls of Kindred Montrose are opened. Dinner soon gives way to a respite for these children and teens, with events as diverse as they are.
Executive director Courtney Sellers said Grace Place has hosted wellness sessions like meditations, even fashion shows, and peer-led discussions on issues impacting lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth.
"Really anything you can imagine," Sellers said.
Youth Night participants can also take advantage of Tracy's Closet, a donation-supported boutique with essential items like clothing, toiletries, food and supplies, giving teens a sense of dignity and self in a gender-affirming space.
The organization also offers case management services and other resources, from bus fares and internet access, to biweekly HIV testing, financial aid, legal aid, housing navigation, and more.
Through the COVID-19 pandemic, Sellers said Grace Place provided more than $100,000 in cash assistance.
As Grace Place seeks to expand its service offerings, including the formation of a 24/7 crisis hotline connecting LGBTQ+ youth with assistance between dusk and dawn, Hall said none of its efforts would be possible without the generosity of others.
"We have amazing resources throughout the city of Houston in combination with our dedicated volunteers," Hall said. "It really makes Grace Place such a special place to be."
Hall said direct mentors and kitchen volunteers are needed to help provide the safe, affirming and healthy relationships youth need to thrive. Click here to learn about volunteering at Grace Place.
You can also give monetary donations and make Amazon wishlist purchases to help further support vulnerable youth in the Houston area.
Gently used or new, age-appropriate clothing for 13 to 24-year-olds, and unopened underwear and socks can be dropped off Mondays and Thursdays from 4-6 p.m., and the 3rd Saturday of every month from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Grace Place is located at 2515 Waugh Dr., in Houston. Their number is 832-239-0824.