Preventing Homelessness Among High Risk Youth
YouthCare has two programs that work to identify young people at great risk of homelessness, and provide them the resources they need to stay housed and move forward.
Detention Case Management
YouthCare’s Detention Case Management program works with minors in juvenile detention who are at risk of homelessness, sexual exploitation and trafficking, gang activity, and those who are entrenched in street life.
Each young person has an individual service plan tailored to their unique needs. One young person may need help reconnecting to a safe school environment; another may be struggling to find stable housing. Our case managers work with them to address these barriers, while encouraging and facilitating family reunification where appropriate.
When these important needs are met, we see that young people move on from the juvenile justice system and begin to reconnect to healthy and age-appropriate activities in the community.
Not surprisingly, research shows that students who attend school more frequently show improved academic performance. But for youth facing certain barriers, getting to school each day can be a significant challenge. Through a partnership with Seattle Public Schools, YouthCare is able to provide case management services at Interagency Academy, a network of alternative schools within Seattle, to assist youth and their families in addressing the obstacles that impact school performance and attendance.
At Interagency, our case managers are known as “Care Coordinators,” and provide extensive outreach and engagement to 9th grade students at seven of the Interagency sites. Many of these young people are struggling with homelessness or unstable housing in conjunction with mental illness, histories of violence, involvement in the juvenile justice system, drug/alcohol issues, and pregnancy or parenting issues. Care Coordinators work closely with families, where appropriate, to engage them in addressing these issues in the young person’s life.