The Girls’ Center
|THE PROBLEM||VOCATIONAL & ENRICHMENT PROGRAMS|
|INVISIBLE GIRLS STORIES||THE CHALLENGE|
|TRANSFORMING INVISIBLE GIRLS||FOUNDATION LEADERSHIP|
|THE GIRLS’ CENTER||NEWS AND PRESS|
In 2010, the Board of Trustees of the Letot Center Capital Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit established to raise funds for the original Letot Center, a capital campaign to raise gifts and grants for the Girl’s Residential Treatment Center from foundations, corporations, individuals and families. The campaign raised a total of $9.4 million.
Following the precedent of the existing Letot Center, the facility was built using private sector funds and gifted to the County, which provides for an estimated operating budget of $2.25 million and building maintenance.
The Letot Girls’ Residential Treatment Center is housed in a two-story, 55,000 square foot facility on the corner of Denton Drive and Lombardy, adjacent to the existing Letot Center. The property was purchased from the Dallas Independent School District by Dallas County specifically for the Residential Treatment Center.
t. howard + associates
The exterior of the Girls’ Center gives the impression of security, while the interior is comfortable and calm. Interior spaces allow for maximum visibility and supervision. Vision panels in offices, programs spaces and the six housing units allow for indirect visual supervision of residents. Building design maximizes the availability of natural light and provides both indoor and outdoor visitation areas for girls and their families.
Activity areas encourage relationship building through the use of moveable furniture conducive to small groups and intimate interactions between staff and girls and by creating areas for comfortable personal conversations.
The first floor is comprised of a central exterior courtyard surrounded on three sides by 1) an administrative, intake services and medical area, 2) mechanical, storage, kitchen and dining facilities and 3) educational services and gymnasium area.
To enhance security, all living quarters are on the second floor of the Girls’ Center and look out upon the central courtyard. Six residential units each contain eight bedrooms which surround a central activity room. Bedrooms feature natural light as well as security grade night lights built into overhead lighting because girls tend to have nightmares relating to past trauma.
In between each two residential units are offices for a case manager and Juvenile Service Officer (JSO), in addition to a therapy workroom. The case manager and JSO desks have clear views into the residential unit activity rooms.