Design for a Difference

I am excited to apply for the Design for a Difference contest from the International Design Guild. This fantastic contest will give one designer the opportunity to spend $25,000 to makeover the space of a local non-profit of their choice. The design process will be professionally shot and produced to premiere on and other online sites. Mark Brunetz, Los Angele celebrity designer who I recently met, will also be here (if I win!) to collaborate with the team every step of the way.
The local charity that I’m submitting is Attention Homes, who spend all of their time and resources helping youth in crisis by providing shelter, structure, and access to crucial services so that homeless and displaced youth can become stable, independent members of our community and achieve their potential. If you’d like to volunteer or donate, please visit their website.

Attention Homes’ Runaway and Homeless Youth (RHY) shelter provides street outreach, day drop-in and overnight shelter to homeless youth. At least 213 homeless youth can be found on any given night in Boulder County and we have the only shelter for them, with only 16 beds. Over 50% of homeless youth report that their parents either told them to leave or knew they were leaving but did not care. These youth are called throwaways. Youth who leave their homes do so because they feel that it will be safer to live on the streets. Often they are victims of abuse or neglect and suffer from mental illness and substance abuse. Homeless youth differ from homeless adults because they are victims of their situation. They have been abandoned or mistreated by those who should have protected them.  

Most first steps for help are at their day drop-in center where youth come to get food, take showers, do laundry and access supportive services. The day drop-in center is located in a basement and consists mostly of a large open room. It is dark, bare and unwelcoming.  If I could update this space, it would make youth feel at home, safe and comfortable so they are willing to access further services and move into the overnight shelter. Attention Homes and I believe that every youth deserves a safe home, and this new design would help provide that to them. 

It would be an honor to work together and create a warm, inviting and safe environment for the homeless youth in our community. I’ll keep you posted on the contest results!


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