Housing and Homelessness: About this Area of Focus
The Link Between Child Welfare and Homelessness for Children, Youth and Families
Thousands of children each year are separated from their families or unable to leave foster care because their parents are homeless, live in inadequate housing or because the family is displaced due to domestic violence. Unfortunately, young people preparing to age out of the foster care system are also facing homelessness and critical housing needs upon their discharge. Although the affordable housing crisis is placing a growing burden on the child welfare system, child welfare professionals are rarely trained to assist youth and families with the difficult tasks of finding adequate housing.
Without stable homes, it is often difficult for struggling families to engage in and benefit from the services provided by child welfare agencies. As a result, children remain at risk for abuse and neglect. In addition to families, thousands of young people age out of the foster care system each year without solid housing plans, resources and familial supports, making it challenging, at best, to build successful lives. Child welfare agencies must have the tools necessary to address the housing problems of the youth and families they serve.
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