A local non-profit is currently raising money to build a shelter for one of Arkansas's most vulnerable groups: homeless gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth. The shelter, called "Lucie's Place," will provide long-term housing for young adults, age 18-25. A project of The Living and Affected Corporation, a gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender advocacy group based in Little Rock, the shelter is to be named after Lucie Marie Hamilton, a transgender woman from Arkansas who died in 2009. The plan is to allow LGBT youth to live at the shelter for up to two years while they get their lives together, with housing free for the first year and $150 per month for the second. During their stay, residents will receive assistance with job searches, school applications and filing for public aid. Bowen Lambda, a UALR Law School group that volunteers on LGBT issues, will offer legal services.
This summer, organizers plan to hold a series of fundraisers, with the goal of raising $20,000 — about a quarter of the projected cost to get Lucie's Place up and running. Their next monthly meeting will be at 5:30 p.m. Monday, June 13, at Boulevard Bread, 1417 Main St. in Little Rock. For more information or to make a donation, visit www.luciesplace.org.