What Works to End Youth Homelessness: What We Know Now NAEHCY 27 th Annual Conference- 2015 Sunday,...
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What Works to End Youth Homelessness: What We Know Now
NAEHCY 27th Annual Conference- 2015 Sunday, November 15 from 10:00 11:15 am Darla Bardine, JD Amy Louttit, JD Executive Director Public Policy AssociateNational Network for Youth www.nn4youth.org
National Network for Youth (NN4Y)Collaboration- Connection to other providers and information about innovative and promising community practicesKnowledge- provide timely and relevant information to increase capacity of communities to serve youth and familiesSolutions- craft solutions to address issues identifiedEducation- educate federal policy makers and provide federal policy information to providersNN4Y envisions a world where vulnerable youth have a safety net everywhere they turncreating positive and strong communities one youth at a time.
2What Works to End Youth HomelessnessYouth Are UniqueYouth-Centric Service ContinuumOutcomes to Measure SuccessNecessary ComponentsCommunity PlanningRecommendationsFederal Policy Updates & Action NeededPartner with NN4Y
Contributing FactorsYouth Fall Through the Cracks of These Systems
PATHWAYS TO HOMELESSNESS FOR YOUTH Youth are still developingEnter homelessness with little to no work experienceOften forced to leave their education prior to completionExperience high levels of victimizationOften enter homelessness without life skillsUsually are negotiating ongoing complicated relationships with their family
YOUTH ARE UNIQUEYouth and families are able to access what they need when they need it.
OVERALL GOAL Family reconnection services when safe and appropriateHousing (length of time will vary)Youth-focused servicesEducation- including K-12 and access to higher educationWorkforce entry programs & job search helpHealth care: mental, physical, behavioralPermanent (re)connections to caring adults
WHAT YOUTH EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS NEED
I am not a childI am not an adultHousingServicesEducation (K-12, higher ed)Linkages Between SystemsWorkforce DevelopmentStaff of Programs Targeted to YouthIncomeFood
YOUTH-CENTRIC SERVICE CONTINUUMHealthPrevention
YOUTH-CENTRIC SERVICE CONTINUUMCrisis & Early Intervention
Longer-term Housing with Support ServicesNeed investment from federal, state, local governments and private Youth-centric system to:Prevent homelessness Decrease reoccurrence of homelessness episodesProvide youth-appropriate housing and servicesYouth-Centric system should be:Responsive to the unique needs of youthAllow flexibility among parts of the systemExpect some youth to exit and re-enter multiple times
YOUTH-CENTRIC SERVICE CONTINUUMPrevention to connect youth and families to services before a youth runs away or is ejected from their homePrevent youth from exiting systems to homelessness
PREVENTIONPrevention is the critical first step toward an effective community response to youth homelessness. Not all incidents of youth homelessness can be prevented, but with appropriate, targeted services, some families and at-risk youth can avoid crisis. Some community programs reach youth through their schools, offering individual and family case management to prevent runaway behavior or provide emergency rental assistance to families facing eviction to prevent family homelessness. Early identification of youth/families in crisis is absolutely critical.
11Drivers of Youth HomelessnessSystems FailuresChild WelfareJuvenile Justice/Criminal JusticeMental HealthFamily Homelessness
Family and Youth CrisisViolence:CommunityInter-familial Inter-personalChildhood Sexual AbuseFamilial rejectionCriminal Justice InvolvementTrauma & Toxic StressSocietal StructuresPovertyRacismHomophobiaDiscriminationViolence
Societal ResponsesReduce PovertyReduce RacismIncrease Acceptance of LGBTDecrease DiscriminationFYSB RHY ProgramsReduce Family ViolenceSocietal Responses System Reform Juvenile/Criminal Justice Physical & Mental HealthChild WelfareFamily HomelessnessReduce PovertyReduce RacismIncrease Acceptance of LGBTDecrease DiscriminationFYSB RHY ProgramsReduce Family ViolenceSocietal Responses System Reform Family Interventions Juvenile/Criminal Justice Physical, Mental, Behavioral HealthChild WelfareFamily Support ServicesBehavioral & Mental Health CareCommunity-based supportChild Abuse PreventionSchool-based supportFamily HomelessnessReduce PovertyReduce RacismIncrease Acceptance of LGBTDecrease DiscriminationFYSB RHY ProgramsReduce Family ViolenceSocietal Responses System ReformFamily Interventions Juvenile/Criminal Justice Mental HealthChild WelfareReduce PovertyReduce RacismIncrease Acceptance of LGBTFamily Support ServicesBehavioral & Mental Health CareCommunity-based supportChild Abuse PreventionSchool-based supportDecrease Discrimination
I am not a childI am not an adultFamily HomelessnessOutreach to connect youth to services before experience homelessness and after a youth is homeless (school personnel are key first-responders)Drop-in centers to engage youth and link to community resourcesShelter provides an important first step off the streetFamily engagement and reunification
EARLY & CRISIS INTERVENTIONOutreach is an important component of early intervention. Outreach workers meet youth on the streets and provide crisis counseling, resources to meet basic needs, and referrals to services. Additionally, outreach workers locate potential victims of human trafficking, build relationships, and provide information so homeless youth know where they are able to access safety and services. Drop-in centers to engage youth and link to community resources. Drop-in centers offer immediate services to unaccompanied homeless youth, such as food, clothing, showers, laundry, bus tokens, and personal hygiene supplies. Drop-in centers also provide counseling and other support services that allow youth to begin to address the issues that led to their homelessness or that impact their daily functioning, with the ultimate goal being to engage youth and move them into more intensive services. Shelter to provide an important first step off the street. Emergency shelter is not a long-term solution to youth homelessness, but it is often the first step for youth on their path to stability. Providing youth developmentally appropriate assessment and case management services while they are in a safe place also allows for more successful service referrals and housing placements. Family engagement and reunification. Family reconnection and reunification for homeless youth is an intervention that offers individual and family support for young people who become, or are at risk of becoming, homeless. Strengths-based family reconnection is most often used with homeless youth under the age of 18 when it is safe, appropriate, and possible. This approach focuses on counseling youth and their caretakers to address the problems that caused the youth to leave home.
17Youth-appropriate housing programs to build independent living skillsCase management to improve wellness & decision-making(Re-) connection to education, including higher education, to increase future income earning capabilityWorkforce development to enable youth to compete in the job market
HOUSING & SUPPORT SERVICESA. Youth-appropriate housing programs to build independent living skills. Service-rich transitional and permanent supportive housing programs should provide a comprehensive range of support services that build independent living skills and support overall well-being. Longer housing stays provide the space to develop emotionally and to build the skills and knowledge necessary for long-term self-sufficiency. B. Case management to improve wellness and decision-making. Case management is an essential component of housing programs and serves as the mechanism for youth to develop both short- and long- term goals for education, employment, financial stability, and overall physical and mental well-being by creating individualized case plans to achieve those goals. The development of trust and understanding between a young person and the case manager is crucial to the relationship. C. Connection to education to increase future income earning capability. Employment opportunities increase as educational attainment increases. In order to ensure youth can obtain and maintain career track employment, they must be supported in the attainment of post-secondary credentials. D. Workforce development to enable youth to compete in the job market. In addition to education, the development of workforce skills is also important for ensuring long-term economic viability for homeless youth. Workforce development includes both soft skills development, such as knowledge of expectations in the workplace, as well as other basic skills necessary to obtain employment. Furthermore, building transferable hard skills that help homeless youth compete in the job market is critical for longer term success.
18This system response should be:Culturally competent Trauma-informedUtilize positive youth developmentTake into account the unique needs of LGBT, trafficked and systems-involved young people
SERVICE FAMEWORKSA. Culturally competent services. Providers must ensure that they are able to reach and provide services to all youth who need them in an inclusive manner, including youth of color, gender non-conforming youth, and LGBT youth. Cultural competence is comprised of four components: awareness of ones own cultural worldview; attitude toward cultural differences; knowledge of different cultural practices and worldviews; and cross-cultural skills. Developing cultural competence results in an ability to understand, communicate with, and effectively interact with people across cultures.1 B. Services for survivors of h