First, we recommend you discuss your options with your social worker, probation officer, AB12 coordinator, or CASA to make sure you understand what’s involved in joining First Place and are choosing the path that is best for you.
If you are in Los Angeles County, please have your social worker complete the Transitional Housing Placement Plus Foster Care (THP+FC) Application and email it to the LA Intake Specialist.
In all other counties that offer MFP, you can get the application process started by contacting the Intake Specialist directly.
There are set steps required for each new participant, including meetings, assessments, paperwork, and identifying an appropriate housing match.
The amount of time this process takes depends on:
You can help us speed up your application process if you come to your first meeting with:
We have a limited number of apartments and, due to state regulations and funding, we have to keep separate lists from AB12 and emancipated youth.
Depending on when you are applying and your foster care status, there may be a wait before we can place you in an apartment.
The intake specialist will be able to give you a better idea of what your wait time may be.
You do not have to pay rent for your apartment.
However, First place operates a savings program for participants and we strongly encourage all participants to make regular (monthly) deposits into their savings account.
Not only does this help build the habits you’ll need in the future, it means that you’ll leave our program with some financial security.
My First Place welcomes participants who have up to 2 children, and we will consider your children’s safety and needs in your housing placement.
We work with young people who have both juvenile and adult convictions. We review each applicant’s history on an individual basis to understand their case and decide if First Place is right for them.
If we do not feel that we can meet your needs at First Place, we will make referrals to other organizations and services.
If you enter First Place from a SILP, you will no longer receive your monthly stipend directly because First Place will be paying your rent. However, we do provide participants with a stipend to help cover your other monthly living expenses.
First Place requires you to meet with your team frequently so we can make sure you are getting all the support you need.
Currently, this means weekly meetings with a Youth Advocate and at least two meetings per month with an Education and Employment Specialist.
Our apartments are “scattered site,” which means they’re in many different neighborhoods rather than one central location. Because of this we can’t tell you where you’ll be living before an apartment becomes available. But we try to ensure all our units have convenient access to public transportation and are close to schools.
Yes! All apartments come with a bed and dresser for each participant, as well as basics for the living room and kitchen. The exact furniture will vary from apartment to apartment.
No worries! After you move in, you’ll go shopping with your Youth Advocate to stock up on the necessities so you can feel at home in your apartment. You’ll have the chance to pick out bedding, kitchenware, cleaning supplies, etc.
Yes. First Place is build on shared housing. You’ll have a chance to meet your roommate before you move in, and First Place staff will help you set rules for the apartment that you both can agree on and work with you to ensure the living situation feels comfortable.
Depending on when you join ILSP, you can stay involved for up to five years. You can join ILSP any time after your 16th birthday, and your eligibility ends on your 21st birthday.
No, but ILSP will help you connect with organizations and resources that provide housing.
Every California county offers an Independent Living Skills Program. You can talk to your social worker to find out what the ILSP/ILP program looks like in your county.
Absolutely! We want you to have as much support as you can get.
If you’re not 18 yet, we encourage you to join your local ILSP program and then apply for My First Place when you are eligible.
In general, ILSP lets you be involved with the program on your own terms and schedule. Our ILSP offices offer open drop in hours as well as scheduled events, and you can participate in as many or as few of them as you want.
However, if you commit to our First Foundation high school completion program, there will be required meetings to ensure you are staying on track and making progress toward graduation.