Homelessness in the United States
Approximately 45% of the homeless are families with children; this group is the fastest growing segment of today’s homeless population. And sadly, 84% of homeless families are headed by a single mother.
Estimates are that 3.5 million people, 1.35 million of them children, are likely to experience homelessness in a given year.
- are sick four times more often than other children
- go hungry at twice the rate of other children
Some of the major reasons for homelessness include:
- lack of affordable housing
- unavailability of employment opportunities
- lack of affordable healthcare
- mental health and/or substance abuse
- domestic violence
Lack of affordable housing and limited housing assistance programs have contributed greatly to the current housing crisis and the increase in homelessness.
Homelessness in Washington State
Last year men, women and children were refused shelter over 170,000 times in Washington State due to a lack of space.
On January 27, 2012 during the One Night Count, more than 20,000 people were found homeless in Washington State; nearly 11,000 of those were in King and Snohomish Counties. And sadly, 45% were families with children. This represents the minimum number of homeless individuals on that one night; there are many more that are hidden or are moving from friend to friend yet are still homeless.
During the 2009-2010 school year, 21,826 K-12 Washington State public school children were homeless with their families.
Homeless families need housing, supportive services and time to rebuild their lives in order to transition successfully to independence and self sufficiency. All three of these critical components are found in the Vision House model.
The housing and support services Vision House provides within a holistic program are critically needed in our region. Vision House allows families to stay up to two years and provides the extensive support services for both adults and children that are needed to build long term success and self-sufficiency.
Read about Vision House programs.