SYDIA COLBERT: CEO & FOUNDER
“Never allow your situations to define who you are.
They are set backs preparing you for your come back.”
When Sydia Simmons was 16 years old, an alcoholic mother kicked her out of her home and into the streets of New York City. While other teenage girls of that age were focused on school… Sydia was focused on survival. She had to figure out a way to not to let her circumstances determine how far she could go in life.
Sydia’s test became her testimony. During this time relied on the generosity of strangers to provide her with gently used clothing, food and a temporary place to call home, while she attended high school. Sydia knew that getting an education would be the key to her success so focused on going to class while working odd jobs to save money.
Sydia’s personal story is now her passion. Her experiences as a homeless teenager prompted her to think about creating an organization that would increase public awareness around issues of teenage homelessness across New York City, while giving these individuals the tools they needed to create a new life for themselves.
Today, Sydia is a wife, mother and founder of The Lost Angel’s Society, (TLAS) a 501C3 non-profit organization, which seeks to provide a safe space for homeless teens, which like Sydia, had nowhere to turn.
Sydia founded TLAS in 2010 and since then has helped hundreds of homeless teens. Aside from providing them with basic necessities of clean clothes, food, medical care, the most important thing TLAS provides for these homeless teens is hope for their future. Like Sydia, many of these teens had attempted suicide and were also in need of mental health services.