Why We Do What We Do – HFY’s Runaway & Homeless Youth Services
Each year, an estimated 4.2 million youth and young adults experience homelessness, of which 700,000 are unaccompanied minors, meaning they are not part of a family or accompanied by a parent or guardian.
On any given night, approximately 41,000 unaccompanied youth ages 13-25 experience homelessness.
One in 10 young adults ages 18-25, and at least one in 30 adolescents ages 13-17, experience some form of homelessness unaccompanied by a parent or guardian over the course of a year. 29% of homeless youth report having substance misuse problems. 69% of homeless youth report mental health problems. 33% had once been part of the foster care system. 50% of homeless youth have been in the juvenile justice system, in jail or detention. 27% of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQ) youth who are homeless reported exchanging sex for basic needs compared to 9% of non-LGBTQ youth who reported having to exchange sex for basic needs. 62% of LGBTQ youth report being physically harmed while experiencing homelessness while 47% of non-LGBTQ youth reported being physically harmed while homeless.
The lack of a high school diploma or General Equivalency Diploma (GED) is the number one correlate for elevated risk of youth homelessness. Many factors increase a young person’s odds of experiencing homelessness. Demographic risk factors for becoming homeless include being Hispanic or black; parenting and unmarried; or LGBTQ, with LGBTQ youth having more than twice the risk of being homeless than their cisgender or heterosexual peers.
We believe that all youth deserve a safe haven and to have their essential needs met. If you know someone who needs these services please share our number: call or text – 24/7 Hotline – 516-659-0923