formerly St. Joseph Orphanage (855) 577-PATH (7284)
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My First Place

Safe Housing & Supports for Foster Youth

My First Place supports current and former foster youth in securing safe housing, getting jobs and building careers, progressing in education, and building the critical life skills you need to be successful in your pursuits. Our  Youth Advocates and Employment and Education Specialists partner with you to help you advance towards your own goals, providing support and guidance around:

  • Education and employment
  • Housing stability
  • Transportation
  • Personal health
  • Relationship building
  • Money management & financial literacy
  • Connections to community resources
  • Other areas tailored to your individual needs and strengths
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You may be eligible for My First Place if:

  • You are between the ages of 17 and 21 and are currently in foster care or recently emancipated
  • A resident in Hamilton County, Ohio

Next Steps to Get Started:

  1. Have your social worker submit a referral on your behalf
  2. Once your eligibility has been confirmed, learn more about My First Place through a Program Day group orientation. If you decide you are interested in what My First Place can offer, our next steps include an initial assessment to help us better understand your needs and goals and a team meeting.
  3. Meet your Youth Advocate and roommate (if applicable).
  4. Move in to your apartment, with furniture provided!
  5. Meet with your My First Place team to work towards your education, employment, healthy living and housing goals.

How is the Program Funded?

The program is funded by Hamilton County Job & Family Services

Who Can Make a Referral

At this time we are only contracted with Hamilton County Job & Family Services for My First Place programming. Hamilton County JFS Social Workers can make a referral on your behalf if you meet the eligibility criteria.

Additional Information

My First Place supports youth reach education, employment, healthy living, and housing goals. The mission of First Place is to help foster youth build the skills they need to make a successful transition to self-sufficiency and responsible adulthood. We believe that all young people in foster care have the potential to achieve long-term success in adulthood, and we envision a world where the disparities between them and the general population have been eliminated. First Place is a national leader in providing evidence-based direct support, increasing awareness, changing perceptions, and building a movement to make this vision a reality.

My First Place is a nationally-recognized education and employment program model that employs housing and case management supports to enable youth to develop a sense of permanency and build the skills they need for a successful transition to self-sufficiency.

Participants are assigned to a team of program staff, consisting of a Youth Advocate (a master’s-level social worker), an Education and Employment Specialist, and a Housing Specialist. With the support of this team, and within the program-embedded Steps to Success and Healthy Transitions frameworks, each young person works to identify, plan for, and achieve their personal long-term goals in education, employment, housing, and healthy living.

We believe that having a safe place to call home is a stabilizing factor that enables youth to focus on their education and employment goals, build community, and establish a foundation for long-term success in independent living. Therefore, as part of the My First Place program, young people receive rent-free housing in shared apartments for the duration of their time in the program.

All Young Adult Transitional Services

Independent Living

ages 16–21

Community-based apartments for youth transitioning to adulthood, including those aging out of foster care. On-site resident manager, life coach, and case manager

My First Place

ages 17–21

An Independent Living Program providing current foster youth with housing, progressing education, building career plans, and life skills. Referral-based: Hamilton county JFS only


ages 18 – 21

Our JOURNEY Housing Program offers housing to Hamilton County resident young adults who are enrolled in a JOURNEY program and have potential to live independently (IE: JOURNEY TIP or ACT Case Management programs). We have housing available in 4 local apartment complexes, 2 complexes for young men, and 2 complexes for young women. Each unit comes fully furnished and move-in ready.

Ohio Bridges Provider

ages 18–20

Providing guidance and support to former foster youth with access to housing, education, employment, and physical/mental health wellness. Refer through

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