‘Milestones’ Program

A Hostel for LGBTQ Youth


The Need

Otot identified a cadre of young men and women, between the ages of 18-25 that the struggle with their sexual and gender identity impacts their ability to successfully navigate through this life stage.

The obstacles they face upon ‘coming out’ include:

  • Families who turn their backs on them and they lose their most significant source of support.
  • The family dynamics have always been problematic, and the recent development brings with it even more harm and suffering.
  • Social and communication problems with their peer group.
  • A history of or current victims of neglect, sexual, physical, financial, and emotional abuse by their families or peers.
  • These young adults are involved in harmful intimate relations or prostitution.
  • Sporadic use of drugs and alcohol.
  • Eating disorders, depression, self-harm, and suicide attempts.


Program Description

Launched in 2018, the Program addresses the needs of LGBTQ young adults ages 18-25. The hostel is staffed 24/7 by a director, coordinator, a ‘house mother’, social worker, instructors, volunteers, and a national service volunteer.

It can accommodate 14 residents from anywhere in Israel for a period of up to a year and a half. In addition to the hostel serving as a safe haven and providing for its residents basic needs such as a place to sleep, meals, showers, and laundry, it also offers:

  • Emotional support throughout the ‘coming out’ process, and the loss of familial support.
  • Emphasis on imparting the necessary independent living skills such as financial and emotional self- sufficiency.
  • Access to education, health and mental health, and employment benefits and entitlements.
  • Guidance throughout the emotional, medical and legal aspects of the gender modification or change processes.
  • Referrals to residential services if independent living is not a viable option.
  • Assistance in developing formal and informal support systems.

All of these services are tailored to each of the individual needs and delivered oftentimes in partnership with other relevant community-based organizations.


Outcomes and Success Measurement

Indicators of desired outcomes for the young adults who resided in the Milestones hostel are reports by them that they succeeded in:

  • Improving their quality of life and emotional state.
  • Locating permanent housing
  • Significant progress made in achieving the goals they set upon entering the program.
  • Accessing benefits and entitlements for psychological rehabilitation and similar programs as well as assistance with debt alleviation.
  • Significant and positive progress made as it relates to minimizing gaps between their assigned and subjectively experienced gender as well as accessing the Israeli sex-change committee located in the Tel HaShomer (Sheba) Hospital.


Funding Request

The annual cost of operating this vital service is $86,050, with $44,400 raised from the Ministry of Social Affairs and Social Services.

Otot is seeking the amount of $41,650 to complete the general support of this program.

Otot is respectfully requesting a grant of $25,000 from the XY Foundation for the general support of the Milestones Program.



It is clear that the Pink Roof Shelter, which assists young adults in the midst of struggling with fallout from their transitioning into their desired sexual or gender identity, is a vital element in promoting and achieving a healthier aftermath. While Otot has achieved initial positive results one year after the program was launched, we hope that with philanthropic funding we can continue to make even greater strides by offering this valuable service. Thank you for your interest and consideration.


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