Youth center in downtown Phoenix provides safe (and fun) haven for LGBTQ kids

By Kathy Ritchie
Published: Saturday, April 9, 2022 - 7:42am
Updated: Saturday, April 9, 2022 - 8:11am

Kathy Ritchie
One-n-Ten's Youth Center has lots of fun games for LGBTQ youth, including this gender affirming foosball game. There's even a drag queen goalie.

For LGBTQ youth, finding a place where they can hangout and safely just be themselves is hugely important. A space in downtown Phoenix is designed with this population in mind.

Walk into One-n-Ten’s Youth Center and it’s hard not to be impressed.

"We have computers for youth who need to check email, maybe resume skills, we have foosball with gender affirming sport characters, we have drag queen goalies, and we have all kinds of gaming systems that I don't even know the name of, an entire music room," explained Sandra Foisy. She’s One-n-Ten’s satellite program manager. There’s even a gender affirming closet, she said. "To get outfits that feel good for them in a safe place, to try them on and have people get excited for what they're picking out for themselves, so they don't have to box themselves into the binary world of male female fitting rooms."

Kathy Ritchie
One n Ten is an LGBTQ youth-centered organization.

The youth center serves people ages 11 through 24 with a wide-range of needs. "But the main thing that everybody can find in common is that this is a safe, sober place that feels like home for them," explained Foisy.

Foisy says everything is free — from books to clothes to the many programs they offer. 

One-n-Ten is hosting an open house on April 9 and is open to the community.