Homeless Youth Legal and Advocacy Project (HYLAP)

With national estimates showing that close to 1.6 million children and youth experience homelessness without a parent or guardian and are at a high risk of being victimized on the streets, our Homeless Youth Legal & Advocacy Project (HYLAP) was launched in 2017 to address criminal defense issues that hinder youth experiencing homelessness from growth and independence and connect them to essential resources. As the only program of its kind in Southern California to empower homeless youth through pro-bono legal representation and personalized advocacy, HYLAP has represented over 250 clients, assisted with over 500 legal issues, and saved more than $500,000 in legal fees and fines.

Our Process

HYLAP is uniquely designed to provide each youth client with holistic support by assigning both an attorney and advocate who offer emotional support and resource navigation as they work on resolving legal challenges. Prospective clients must be between the ages of 14-27.

For prospective clients

Please contact our Executive Director & Managing Attorney, Mitchelle Woodson, at (619) 354-9879 or mitchelle@thinkdignity.org to enroll in the program.

How You Can Support