Lydia House: A Safe Place in Downtown Honolulu


Photo: Chiemi Davis

By Chiemi Davis

After years in development, an interim opening during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, and a complete renovation, Lydia House opened its doors to ʻōpio ages 16-26 at 205 S. Vineyard Street in downtown Honolulu on Feb. 21.

This (re)engagement center for the youth, grounded in deep cultural roots, serves some of the most vulnerable members of the lāhui – “opportunity youth” – who may be aging out of the child welfare or juvenile justice systems. These kamaliʻi may not be connected to school, work, or a resilient network of caring adults and just need a little more support to transition successfully into independent, self-determined adult lives.

Photo: Lydia House
LT’s newly opened “Lydia House” for youth ages 16-26 is at 205 S. Vineyard St., on the corner of Vineyard St. and Queen Emma St. across from Princess Ruth Keʻelikōlani Middle School. – Photos: Liliʻuokalani Trust

Lydia House’s approach is rooted in the spirit of aloha and named in honor of the Queen. This safe, welcoming space is currently open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., with expanded days and hours to come.

ʻŌpio who stop by Lydia House can have:

  • Basic needs fulfilled including a hot shower, meal, access to laundry facilities, and wireless internet access.
  • A safe space to rest and relax. Comfortable couches with pillows and blankets create an inviting environment. A variety of instruments are available to play, too.
  • Connection to caring adults.

The plan for Lydia House was generated after years of research, focus groups, and intensive discussions with dozens of community partners. While considerable community resources are invested in services and programs for youth up to 18, there was an opportunity for real impact by extending care into early adulthood.

Photo: Lydia House Interior
Lydia House provides youth and young adults a safe, welcoming space to rest and relax. It is a place where they can get a hot shower and a meal, do their laundry, play music or access free WiFi. This (re)engagement center is intended to serve vulnerable youth aging out of the child welfare or juvenile justice systems.

For more information, visit or follow Lydia House on Facebook and Instagram @LydiaHouseHI. No appointments are necessary; drop-in during business hours. You can also call LTʻs Mālama Line at 808-466-8080.

Chiemi Davis is vice president and chief program officer at Liliʻuokalani Trust.