A national network of funders supporting strategic, innovative, and effective solutions to homelessness

Youth Homelessness

Homelessness is more than a lack of a place to sleep tonight.  For a young person, it means instability, fear, and often an inability to properly learn and prepare for adulthood.  Increasingly, people who work with vulnerable youth are realizing that the lack of a safe and stable home makes it difficult for any other youth-focused program to be successful.

Over the past decade, we have made significant progress is ending and preventing homelessness among adult populations.  We have seen reductions in chronic and veteran homeless populations and some promising results around solutions to family homelessness.  In many instances, philanthropy has been a catalyst for change at the local and national levels.

Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for youth homelessness.  While we increasingly recognize the problem, we lack adequate data and research on the scope of the problem and effective solutions.  The approach at both the community and national levels continues to be inconsistent, lacking in coordination, and rarely evidence-based.  And philanthropy must help catalyze the necessary change.


From Our Members

Raikes Foundation - A Place to Call Home: Our Strategy for Solving Youth Homelessness

Raikes Foundation / Building Changes - Priority Action Steps to Prevent and End Youth/Young Adult Homelessness: An Implementation Plan


Other Resources

The Age Structure of Contemporary Homelessness: Evidence and Implications for Public Policy

The Age Structure of Contemporary Homelessness: Risk Period or Cohort Effect?

An Emerging Framework for Ending Unaccompanied Youth Homelessness

Costs Associated with First-time Homelessness

Drugs, Homelessness, and Health: Homeless Youth Speak Out About Harm Reduction

Employment Needs of Foster Youth in Illinois: Findings from a Midwest Study

Ending Homelessness After Foster Care: Conference Report

Identifying and Serving LGBTQ Youth: Case Studies of Runaway and Homeless Youth Program Grantees

Los Angeles Convening on Youth Homelessness: Progress, Gaps, Opportunities, and Challenges

National Alliance to End Homelessness Resources on Youth Homelessness

National Network for Youth's Comprehensive Framework to End Youth Homelessness

On the Lifetime Prevalence of Running Away from Home

True Youth Count Toolkit

US Interagency Council on Homelessness's Framework to End Youth Homelessness


View blog posts on youth homelessness


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We joined Funders Together because we believe in the power of philanthropy to play a major role in ending homelessness, and we know we have much to learn from funders across the country.

-Christine Marge, Director of Housing and Financial Stability at United Way of Greater Los Angeles

I am thankful for the local partnerships here in the Pacific Northwest that we’ve been able to create and nurture thanks to the work of Funders Together. Having so many of the right players at the table makes our conversations – and all of our efforts – all the richer and more effective.

-David Wertheimer, Deputy Director at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Very often a lack of jobs and money is not the cause of poverty, but the symptom. The cause may lie deeper in our failure to give our fellow citizens a fair chance to develop their own capacities, in a lack of education and training, in a lack of medical care and housing, in a lack of decent communities in which to live and bring up their children.

-President Lyndon B. Johnson, 1964 State of the Union Address

Funders Together has given me a platform to engage the other funders in my community. Our local funding community has improved greatly to support housing first models and align of resources towards ending homelessness.

-Leslie Strnisha, Vice President at Sisters of Charity Foundation of Cleveland

Our family foundation convenes local funders and key community stakeholders around strategies to end homelessness in Houston. Funders Together members have been invaluable mentors to us in this effort, traveling to our community to share their expertise and examples of best practices from around the nation.

-Nancy Frees Fountain, Managing Director at The Frees Foundation

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