Information on Homelessness and Children

 

  • Families with children are the fastest growing segment of the homeless population and more than 1 million children are homeless each year in this country (The National Center for Family Homelessness).
  • Within a single year, 97% of homeless children move, many up to three times (National Center for Family Homelessness). With each change in schools, a student is set back academically by an average of four to six months (Rogers 1991).
  • 75% of runaway and homeless youth have dropped out or will drop out of school (National Network for Runaway and Homeless Youth).
  • Across the country, one in five homeless school-aged children repeats a grade in school, twice the national rate for all children (Homes for the Homeless and The Institute for Children and Poverty).
  • Compared with housed children, children who are homeless experience more developmental delays, anxiety, depression, and behavioral problems, and lower academic achievement (Shinn and Weitzmann 1996).
  • Children without a home are in fair or poor health twice as often as other children, and have higher rates of asthma, ear infections, stomach problems, and speech problems (Better Homes Fund 1999).