A few weeks back I stood at the corner of 65th and Normandie, in South Los Angeles, remembering what used to be there. An old church, maybe from the 1930s — Spanish Revival with white-washed plaster and enough curved red tile on the roof to make you think it might be real. The congregation members had long since moved away or died, and now the building itself was gone, replaced by sparkling new apartments with units exclusively designed for emancipated youth. Each year in Los Angeles County 1,500 kids get cut loose from the foster-parent system. They are 18 years old with no family, no job, no place to live, no skills and no support to learn any, which is why a majority will end up on the streets or in jail.
And this is why this building, the Epworth Apartments, means so much. Over the years, it could save the lives of scores of young adults.