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Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Resources for Homeless Kids and Young Adults

Homeless children

According to the United States Council on Homelessness (USICH), around 11% of all people experiencing homelessness on a particular night are “unaccompanied” youth—those who are under the age of 25 and not with a parent or guardian. The UISCH strives to end homelessness. They focus on youth because “about one in ten young adults ages 18 to 25, and about one in 30 adolescents ages 13 to 17, experience some form of unaccompanied homelessness over the course of a year.” These statistics are a glaring look into something that needs to be fixed in our country.
According to the 2015 Opening Doors Strategic Plan put into place by USICH to end homelessness, we must address the following if we wish to help prevent youth homelessness. These include:
  • Individual goal-based planning
  • Continuous support services that connect to mainstream resources
  • Education and employment
  • Self-sufficient living skills training
  • Affordable housing
  • Connection to trustworthy and supportive adults
Homelessness is a real problem, and thankfully there are a plethora of resources for homeless kids and other individuals who need help. We’ve compiled a list of these resources to help get the word out and help protect people in our communities.
  • Basic Center Program (BCP)
Supported by the Family & Youth Services Bureau (FYSB), BCP works to establish and strengthen community-based programs to meet immediate needs of runaway and homeless youth. They provide food, clothing, counseling, and emergency shelter.
  • Transitional Living Program (TLP)
Another FYSB funded program, Transitional Living works to create a safety net and strong emotional support system so that young people can transition into self-sufficiency. TLP provides long-term residential services for up to 635 days. If after 635 days the person has not yet turned 18, they may stay in the program until then.
  • Street Outreach Program (SOP)
Since 1996, the Family & Youth Services Bureau has funded the Street Outreach Program, which urges organizations around the country to help get young people off the streets. Their end goal is to prevent the sexual abuse and exploitation of young people living on the streets or in unstable housing.
Volunteers of America has helped over 1.3 million people; they are a ministry of service that is dedicated to helping those in need rebuild their lives and reach their full potential.

These are just a few of the many resources for homeless kids and individuals. If you want to look into some more, youth.gov has a list of resources and other programs you can look at.