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Homeless and Runaway Youth

Posted in Understanding the IssuesTagged , , , , ,
By: Blackwell Digital
Posted On: September 30, 2013

Living life as a homeless, throwaway or runaway teen is as real as it gets. Any stability of living within four walls and a roof, with responsible adults and basic needs like food and warmth met become can be much more difficult to obtain, and the risks of injury, accident, illness and violence may rise dramatically.

For some teens, though, living the life of a runaway or homeless adolescent is the way out of a household impacted by domestic violence and instability. A recent study by the Center for Impact Research found that 30 percent of homeless youth report that domestic violence is the reason they are homeless.

Safe Connections has partnered with Youth In Need, a St. Charles, Missouri-based agency dedicated to providing nurturing the potential in the most vulnerable children, teens and families. Through this partnership, Safe Connections offers support and education groups at the Youth In Need Emergency Shelter for teens, trains the agency staff in issues related to relationship violence and sexual assault and distributes materials about teen services to all young people served by Safe Connections’ Project HART prevention education program – nearly 6,000 adolescents each year.

If you are homeless or a runaway, call us at 314.531.2003; we can help. If you know a teen who is homeless or a runaway, share our information. Again, we can help.

The Facts:

  • One out of seven children will run away sometime between the ages of ten and eighteen. –National Runaway Switchboard
  • Youth ages 12-17 are at higher risk for homelessness than adults –Link, B., Susser, E., Stueve, A., Phelan, J., Moore, R., Struening, E. (1994). Lifetime and Five-year Prevalence of Homelessness in the United States. American Journal of Public Health. Vol. 84, No. 12 pp 1907-1912
  • The highest rates of intimate partner violence affects women ages 16-24 –U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Special Report: Intimate Partner Violence and Age of Victims, 1993-99, Oct. 2001, rev. 11/28/01
  • Youth are at an increased risk of being physically and sexually abused while on the streets –Whitbeck, L.B. & Hoyt, D.R. (1999). Nowhere to Grow: Homeless and Runaway Adolescents and Their Families. New York: Aldine de Gruyter
  • In a Chicago-based study by the Center for Impact Research, 30% of youth respondents identified domestic violence as the cause of their homelessness –Levin, R., Bax, E., McKean, L., & Schoggen, L. (2205). Homeless Youth on Homelessness. Chicago, IL: Center for Impact Research

Resources for Runaway and Homeless Youth:

  • Safe Connections 24-Hour Crisis Helpline 314.531.2003
  • Safe Place (Youth In Need) 24-hour Help Line 636-946-3771
  • National Runaway Switchboard 1-800-RUNAWAY
  • Safety Net For Youth
  • Safe Place for Teens
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