Town Hall Los Angeles
, hosted by KPCC, presented a panel discussion to address the mental health and wellness challenges faced by homeless youth and the community programs and services available to them.
Children and young adults are not the popular faces of homelessness, yet more than 200,000 unaccompanied children and youth (age 12-17) experience homelessness each year in California. This number does not include the 65,000 youth who leave foster care at age 18 without a place to live. In Orange County, more than 22,000 children are considered homeless. Los Angeles Unified School District, second largest in the nation, has 13,000 homeless students. These numbers are only expected to rise because of high unemployment, foreclosures, and steep housing costs.
Donna C. Myrow
, Executive Director and Publisher, LA Youth
, Director, Huntington Beach Youth Shelter, Community Services Program
, LCSW, Associate Executive Director, Covenant House California
Curtis F. Shepard
, PhD, Director of Children, Youth & Family Services, Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center
Joan S. Tucker
, PhD, Senior Behavioral Scientist, RAND Corporation; "Running Away From Home: A Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Risk Factors and Youth Adult Outcomes"
Photo Credit: Robyn Beck AFP/Getty Images