New LGBT youth homeless shelter planned for Russell neighborhood

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — There are plans to open an LGBT youth homeless shelter in the Russell neighborhood.

When completed, the shelter would be the first of its kind in the Louisville metro area.

It will be located in the Plymouth Settlement House, which was built in 1917, and will be known as Sweet Evening Breeze, named after a transgendered woman considered by some to be the originator of the Lexington drag scene.

Sweet Evening Breeze was known for her random acts of kindness to help the poor until her death in 1983.

The facility at the corner of Chestnut and 17th streets currently has boarded-up windows, cracked steps and caution tape surrounding it, but a renovation project will make it a safe haven for homeless LGBT youth.

"When on the streets they face greater risks for substance use, survival sex, mental health concerns such as depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation are homeless longer than their heterosexual and gender neutral counterparts," said Maurice Gattis of the University of Louisville Kent School of Social Work.

Much work is still to be done, but the facility will initially house 18 people.

Sweet Evening Breeze will also provide case management and mental health services.

If you are interested in helping get Sweet Evening Breeze up and running, click here.

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