Young Women's Freedom Center
The Young Women’s Freedom Center (formerly the Center for Young Women's Development), is a leadership and advocacy organization for cis and trans young women of color that have grown up in poverty, been involved with the system, and experienced life on the streets. Founded in 1993, the Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in San Francisco and working with young women and girls in surrounding counties on the streets, in group homes, and in jails and locked facilities.
The Young Women's Freedom Center is one of the first non-profits in the United States run and led entirely by young women. From the beginning, we have organized young women who were the most marginalized in San Francisco — those in the street economies and the juvenile justice system — to design and deliver peer-to-peer education and support. Today we offer a vibrant model for linking youth development and youth organizing, with the mission of providing gender-specific, peer-based opportunities for high-risk, low- and no-income young women to build healthier lives and healthier communities. Our programs work to ensure that young women who have been deeply hurt and excluded — who have been homeless, incarcerated, or otherwise severely impacted by poverty — have a place to heal, achieve self-sufficiency and become positively engaged in their communities. All of our programs have been designed using a holistic approach that recognizes each young woman as a whole person who already has the experience and strength necessary to become a powerful leader and agent of change.