Our Story


Supporting at-risk youths transition to productive adults

SHELTER 37 was founded by James Washington in 1993 as a not-for-profit public benefit corporation that provides highly effective life skills, job training, and educational programs to youth in southern California.

SHELTER 37 seeks to improve the overall well-being of children and young adults whose lives have been affected or disrupted by crime, violence, or abandonment and, as a result, are more at risk of turning to gangs, crime, drugs, or becoming withdrawn, antisocial, or socially inept.

The mission of Shelter 37 was inspired by the personal journey of its founder, James Washington, whose life experiences are a story of triumph over adversity.

Under James’ leadership, Shelter 37 provides programs to address the root cause of school and personal challenges by providing guidance and support that is rooted in compassion and a deep understanding of the difficult environments in which many young Angelenos find themselves.

Shelter 37 does this by implementing a values-based, real-world curriculum that assists students in setting goals that can be immediately applied to their own lives as students, employees, parents, community leaders, and strong, empowered individuals.

James Washington

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