Communities in Struggling to Reach Homeless Students
“When we get ready for school or just getting dressed, we would just go to, like, a public bathroom or like a park bathroom [or] McDonald’s.”
Said Joseph, 15, who once lived in a car with his family in Los Angeles. Today, Joseph and his family, victims of domestic violence, have their own apartment when they can work with a tutor at a kitchen table.
On Skid Row in Los Angeles, a place where it is hard to imagine children living, the average age of a homeless child is 8. Says Catherine Meek, Executive Director of Schools on Wheels organization, which offers these very at risk children some stability.
“Experts ‘estimate that they are nine times more likely to repeat a grade, four times more likely to drop out of school entirely, They are at risk for physical abuse, sexual abuse, health, medical issues [are] a huge problem.’”
Said Ms. Meek.
“The same situations occur in communities across NJ. This news story supports the push for Congress to increase funding for vouchers. With more vouchers available in more communities, families experiencing homelessness like Joseph’s would be able to live in the own apartments rather than cars or on Skid Row. Every child deserves a kitchen table where he or she can do homework at night.”
Said Richard W. Brown, CEO of Monarch Housing.
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