Nov 10, 2021 - News

Late-night safe havens to open for Philadelphia youth

Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios

Late-night resource centers for youth are opening in Philadelphia next month.

What's happening: The city is paying a total of $1.95 million to a trio of community organizations to remain open during evenings and into the early mornings so that young people have a safe space to go.

Why it matters: Children are more at risk of being victims of gun violence or perpetrating gun violence during those late-night hours, said Fred Fogg, an assistant vice president for Youth Advocate Programs, which received one of the grants.

By the numbers: Children have accounted for 37 of the 471 homicides in the city as of Sunday, according to police.

Details: The three sites will be open daily between 7pm-2am, offer activities and programming, and connect families to social services.

  • The centers, which will receive $650,000 each, are expected to open during the second week of December.

Of note: Police can take children who are breaking the city's curfew laws to these centers, rather than a police station.

What they're saying: Fogg said he thinks the centers will have a long-term impact on the community.

  • Councilmember Jamie Gauthier said in a released statement that the city "can combat gun violence by providing young people with structured activities, mentorship from caring adults, and safe places to go."

The resource centers will be located at:

  • Diversified Community Services, 1920 S. 20th St. in South Philly
  • Community of Compassion CDC Inc., 6150 Cedar Ave. in Southwest Philly
  • Youth Advocate Programs, 900 W. Jefferson St. in North Philly

What to watch: The resource centers will be open for a year.

  • Nya Sturrup, a city spokesperson, told Axios the long-term goal is to open six sites.

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