Center for Changing Lives Duluth


It Will Help Kids of All Kinds

Children in Gym

The Center for Changing Lives will serve young people from all walks of life. What they will all have in common is that they are not scary kids, they are scared kids—and they need a place to call home.

Common characteristics of the young people served by Lutheran Social Service (LSS) in Duluth:

  • 90 percent come from a background of low income/poverty.
  • 80 percent have a background of abuse, including sexual abuse.
  • 85 percent have parents with a history of chemical abuse or dependency.
  • 85 percent of the young people accepted into LSS’ transitional housing program are disconnected from the person who was their primary caregiver during their formative years.

The Impact

The Center for Changing Lives will:

  • Increase the number of youth-focused housing units in Duluth by over 300 percent.
  • Serve as a hub for all LSS services for homeless and at-risk youth and allow staff to work holistically with each young person, coordinate care, streamline work processes and share information, resources and ideas.
  • Help bring youth issues out of invisibility and shift our perception of at-risk and homeless young people.
  • Have a significant impact on the Duluth community. According to research conducted by the Amhersth Wilder Foundation in 2012:
    • Young people experience an $11,543 increase in annual wages in their first year after leaving homelessness.
    • A high school graduate’s lifetime earnings are $476,000 higher than a dropout’s.
    • Society receives a return of over 4:1 for every dollar invested in supportive services for homeless young people.