• Maryland's First Unaccompanied Homeless Youth & Young Adult Count: Findings from Youth REACH MD Phase 2

      Shannahan, Ryan; Harburger, Deborah Sarah; Unick, George Jay; Greeno, Elizabeth J.; Shaw, Terry V. (University of Maryland, Baltimore. School of Social Work. Institute for Innovation & Implementation, 2016-05)
      Every night in Maryland, thousands of youth and young adults living on their own turn to their a friend's couch, a stranger's house, a vacant building, the street, or some other tenuous or unsuitable location for a place to sleep. These are unaccompanied homeless youth - youth or young adults under 25 years old who are not in the care of their parents or guardians and lack access to safe, adequate, and reliable housing. We know these youth are individuals with their own stories and experiences and that they are not defined by their housing status. This report—and all of the work of Youth REACH MD—is designed to identify the common challenges and barriers that result in youth and young adults experiencing homelessness in order to end youth homelessness. No finding, statement, or analysis in this report should be taken to diminish the importance of the voices of youth and young adults or to minimize the individual experiences, preferences, and vision for the future that each youth and young adult has for themselves. This report reflects the aggregate findings regarding a diverse population of youth and young adults who were willing share of themselves by participating in this survey, and we are grateful to them for sharing their stories and experiences with us and for helping us to gain new and deeper understanding of what it means to experience homelessness.