Orange County LGBTQ+ Youth and Mentorship Program to Provide Physical & Mental Health Services

Radiant Health Centers is in the process of creating a LGBTQ+ youth and mentorship program that will deliver a comprehensive range of services to young people in Orange County. The first step for this new program is the expansion of our mental health counseling services directed to the specific needs of Orange County’s young LGBTQ+ population. As LGBTQ+ youth transition from childhood to adulthood, they face many challenges that can have a negative impact on mental and physical health.

We offer group counseling geared toward our youth through in-person and virtual groups. Access our counseling schedule for days/times.

What Is the Plan for Our LGBTQ+ Youth and Mentorship Program?

Through a range of free care programs, including a drop-in center, mentor relationships, counseling sessions and treatment, our youth program will help younger people develop into healthy, confident and motivated adults.

The youth program at Radiant Health Centers will be designed as a holistic support service for LGBTQ+ youth. The program will integrate sexual health education, HIV and STI testing, mentorship, primary health care, a safe zone for socializing with peers and more.

As Orange County’s LGBTQ+ youth currently face a lack of complementary physical, social and mental health services, the program aims to provide much-needed assistance during the pivotal years before adulthood.

Why Is the Youth Program Necessary?

LGBTQ+ youth frequently encounter discrimination, food insecurity and mental health barriers in their daily lives. Many of these challenges were highlighted in The Trevor Project 2021 National Survey on LGBTQ Mental Health.

For example, 42% of LGBTQ+ youth considered suicide in the past year, while 48% wanted mental health counseling but were unable to access it. Experiences of discrimination due to sexual orientation or gender identity were reported by 75% of LGBTQ+ youth, and 30% experienced food insecurity in the past month. These statistics (and many others from the survey) show the need for an integrated youth program that fulfills the needs of the community.

Some of Our LGBTQ+ Youth Services

Youth Program Calendar

Are you interested in joining us for a Youth Event? You will find the important details below. You can also check back regularly for the latest announcements and current calendar.

[Please check back regularly for a new calendar.]

Mental Health Group Counseling and Peer Support

We currently provide in-person and virtual counseling sessions covering mental health, trans issues, parent sessions, individual and group therapy, goal-driven education and more.

Youth Drop-In Center

Our Orange County Drop-In Center will be a friendly environment for LGBTQ+ youth to pick up sexual health and harm reduction supplies, free from discrimination and judgment.

The LGBTQ+ Youth Drop-In Center is a free safe space for all LGBTQ+ youth ages 12–26. It’s a place to socialize – to meet with other folks in the community and hang out – a place to get mentoring and coaching, and to access affirming resources and referrals.

Youth Drop-In Center services:

  • Computer/internet access, plus assistance on resume building & career coaching
  • Games, activities, snacks
  • Gender affirming wardrobe
  • Self-care, grooming items
  • Holiday and community events
  • Referrals
  • Emotional and social support

Mentor Program

Our goal for the near future is to train mentors who will give long-term guidance to LGBTQ+ youth, providing emotional, informational and interpersonal support. Lifelong bonds can be forged that deliver ongoing benefits for mentees.

Gender Affirming Closet

Our drop-in center will have an on-site closet where participants can access free and good-quality clothing and accessories. This resource will be stocked with items as determined based on our participants needs.

Youth Committee

As our youth client base grows, we will create youth groups that will meet to discuss the needs of youth program participants, including workshop content, support & social group topics, along with items for the gender affirming closet.

LGBTQ+ Sensitive Sexual Health Education Groups

All youth will have access to educators and medical providers will deliver sex-positive advice on healthy sexual behavior, disease prevention, consent and other topics impacting transitional aged youth.

Integrated Medical Clinic

Youth program participants will also have access to the Radiant Health Centers medical clinic. Services available at the clinic include HIV and STI testing and regular health checkups

Common Questions About the LGBTQ+ Youth Program

Why are drop-in centers important for LGBTQ+ youth?

With an increased risk of homelessness, bullying, mental health issues and suicide, a drop-in center provides a safe, positive and welcoming environment for LGBTQ+ youth.

What are the benefits of talking to a counselor for LGBTQ+ youth?

An experienced counselor can assist with mental health issues, gender dysphoria, transitioning, sexual health advice and much more.

Why is peer support important for LGBTQ+ youth?

Support from a network of peers will help young people overcome the challenges of discrimination, loneliness, family support issues and more while building a reassuring environment.

Get Free Access to LGBTQ+ Youth Programs in Orange County

Radiant Health Centers provides a range of physical and mental health services to transitional aged youth between the ages of 12–26. If you want to access our care programs, counseling, or medical services in Orange County, call our Irvine office at (949) 809-5700 or request an appointment now.

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