WHO WE ARE
JOY Baltimore (JOY) is a grassroots organization whose primary goal is to end youth homelessness within Baltimore, Maryland. Through our Drop-In Center, we offer homeless, displaced, runaway and LGBTQ youth ages 13-24, access to emergency and permanent housing, medical and dental services, community services, vital records, and Maryland State ID.
JOY wishes to eliminate to economic barriers faced by homeless youth within our city. Baltimore City has approximately 2,700 homeless, displaced and runaway youth, but this number can be higher. They often are not able to gain employment because of their lack of housing, vital records or Maryland identification. Many of these youth end up sleeping on the streets, “couch surfing”, or falling victim to drugs, prostitution and sex trafficking. This problem is significant because many of these youth end up on drugs, committing crimes, incarcerated, or dead on the streets. They are also faced with constant police harassment and abuse which was made prevalent during the 2015 Baltimore riots.
JOY addresses the lack of adequate, sustainable housing, educational and workforce opportunities for Baltimore’s youth. Through outreach, education, and resources, JOY’s goal is to break and conquer this never-ending cycle of poverty while teaching youth how to be sustainable within their own community and help bring a new economic revival to this area.