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National Clearinghouse on Homeless Youth and Families

Mental Disorders

Trauma-informed Care for Street-involved Youth

Trauma-informed Care for Street-involved Youth
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This book chapter reviews trauma and youth homelessness, discusses specific strategies to implement trauma-informed care in service settings, and provides excerpts of interviews with youth and service providers that illustrate the challenges homeless youth face and how trauma-informed services address their unique needs. Research indicates that trauma is pervasive in the lives of youth who are street involved or homeless and is both a cause and a consequence of homelessness. Homeless youth are vulnerable to victimization and may be plagued by chronic stress, including unmet basic needs, food insecurity, and loss of friends, family members, community, and social supports. This type of chronic and repeated exposure to adversity and trauma leads to serious mental health consequences. In addition, young people with complex trauma may have difficulty engaging with service providers and benefiting from traditional youth services. The chapter concludes with implementation considerations and key messages for practitioners and agencies.  

Accession number
25431
Authors
Hopper, E.K., Olivet, J., Bassuk, E.L.
Type new
Book Chapter
Organization

Toronto, Canada: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness Press

Year published new
2018
Availability

Available for download free of charge from the Homeless Hub, a service of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at http://homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/Ch1-4-MentalHealthBook.pdf

Substance Use and Mental Health Interventions for Youth Who Are Homeless: The Community Reinforcement Approach and Motivational Enhancement Therapy

Substance Use and Mental Health Interventions for Youth Who Are Homeless: The Community Reinforcement Approach and Motivational Enhancement Therapy
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This book chapter provides information on two substance use and mental health interventions for homeless youth--the community reinforcement approach (CRA) and motivational enhancement therapy (MET). An estimated 48 percent to 98 percent of youth who are homeless meet criteria for at least one mental health diagnosis, including depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, posttraumatic stress disorder, psychosis, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Between 69 percent and 86 percent meet criteria for a substance use disorder. Youth who are homeless have elevated rates of co-occurring substance use and mental health disorders when compared with their housed peers. Left untreated, substance use and mental health problems create additional barriers to exiting homelessness. Intervention efforts to improve the lives of these youth may have limited impact if underlying substance use and mental health problems are not treated. Research has shown that using CRA and MET has been effective among homeless youth. Youth who participated in CRA reported increases in social stability and decreases in drug use and depression compared with usual treatment. MET has been associated with similar positive outcomes. The book chapter describes the theoretical basis for both interventions, as well as program components and implementation considerations.   

Accession number
25428
Authors
Brakenhoff, B., Slesnick, N.
Type new
Book Chapter
Organization

Toronto, Canada: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness Press

Year published new
2018
Availability

Available for download free of charge from the Homeless Hub, a service of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at http://homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/COH-MentalHealthBook.pdf.

Social Support Networks and the Mental Health of Runaway and Homeless Youth

Social Support Networks and the Mental Health of Runaway and Homeless Youth
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This journal article describes a study that examined the relationship between personal support network resources and mental health among runaway and homeless youth. The survey results from 693 participants in Atlanta, Georgia, indicate that more supportive network ties reduce the risk of symptoms of severe mental illness among youth who have been homeless. The study found that those young people homeless for more than 6 months reported having fewer personal network resources. According to the authors, the most significant finding was that age was an independently negative factor for certain types of support resources. That is, the older youth had less support from friends and coworkers than their younger peers. These findings suggest that increased isolation and fewer resources may negatively affect the mental and well-being of runaway and homeless youth as they grow older and stay on the street longer. 

Accession number
25465
Authors
Wright, E.R., Attell, B.K., Ruel, E.
Type new
Journal Article
Journal Name

Social Sciences

Volume new
6
Year published new
2017
Availability

Available for free download at: http://www.mdpi.com/2076-0760/6/4/117

Mindfulness Approaches for Youth Experiencing Homelessness

Mindfulness Approaches for Youth Experiencing Homelessness
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This book chapter describes mindfulness as an intervention approach for homeless youth to improve their mental health. Mindfulness involves bringing attention to what is happening within us and around us in moment-to-moment experiences, without labeling experiences as good or bad. It has been found to be an effective approach for improving well-being among adults and there is increasing support for its use in enhancing regulatory capacities among vulnerable youth populations. Pilot studies that examine whether mindfulness intervention is possible in shelter settings and is acceptable to homeless youth generally find that youth will attend mindfulness training and that those who do may experience important benefits. The chapter begins by describing the general objectives and components of mindfulness-based practice. It then discusses how mindfulness-based programs have been implemented with youth experiencing homelessness and what the outcomes have been. The chapter concludes with key strategies for practitioners to consider in their work with youth accessing homeless services. 

Accession number
25430
Authors
Brown, S.M., Bender, K.
Type new
Book Chapter
Organization

Toronto, Canada: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness Press

Year published new
2018
Availability

Available for download free of charge from the Homeless Hub, a service of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at http://homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/COH-MentalHealthBook.pdf.

Mental Health Outcomes Among Homeless, Runaway, and Stably Housed Youth

Mental Health Outcomes Among Homeless, Runaway, and Stably Housed Youth
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This journal article describes a study that sought to assess differences in mental health outcomes among runaway youth and homeless youth. Both populations are at risk for adverse mental health outcome and are frequently pooled together in both research and interventions yet may have unique health needs. The researchers conducted a secondary data analysis of 9- and 11th-graders in the 2016 Minnesota Student Survey (n=68,785). They categorized youth into four subgroups based on housing status in the previous year: (1) unaccompanied homeless youth (0.5%), (2) runaway youth (4%), (3) youth who had both run away and been homeless (0.6%), and (4) stably housed youth (95%). They found that unstably housed youth had poorer mental health outcomes when compared with their stably housed peers. For example, 11% of homeless youth, 20% of runaways, and 33% of youth who had experienced both had attempted suicide in the previous year compared with 2% of stably housed youth. The findings suggest that runaway and homeless youth represent unique populations with high levels of mental health needs who would benefit from targeted clinical and community interventions. Pediatric clinicians represent one potential point of screening and intervention. (author abstract modified)

Accession number
25881
Authors
Gerwirtz, J.R., Edinburgh, L.D., Barnes, A.J., McRee, A.
Type new
Journal Article
Organization

American Academy of Pediatrics

Journal Name

Pediatrics

Volume new
145
Year published new
2020
Availability

Full-text article available for free download at: https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/pediatrics/145/4/e201926…

Mental Health and Addiction Interventions for Youth Experiencing Homelessness: Practical Strategies for Front-line Providers

Mental Health and Addiction Interventions for Youth Experiencing Homelessness: Practical Strategies for Front-line Providers
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This book is a collection of peer-reviewed research for service providers on best and promising mental health practices for street-involved youth. It contains four sections covering a range of topics that service providers inquire about most often. Part 1: Approaches and Interventions describes specific approaches for addressing mental health and substance use challenges of youth experiencing homelessness. Part 2: Specific Groups reflects the diversity among youth experiencing homelessness. While many interventions and approaches may be relevant across groups, attention should be paid to the unique needs to LGBTQ, Native, newcomer, and other youth populations. Part 3: Contexts and Considerations focuses on where and how interventions are delivered, including drop-in centers and outreach. Part 4: Assessment and Evaluation aims to support service providers who are increasingly required to provide outcome evidence in order to obtain funding and inform service improvement and resource allocation. 

Accession number
25427
Authors
Kidd, S., Slesnick, N., Frederick, T., Karabanow, J., Gaetz, S.
Type new
Book
Organization

Toronto, Canada: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness Press

Year published new
2018
Availability

Available for download free of charge from the Homeless Hub, a service of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at http://homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/COH-MentalHealthBook_0.pdf

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy to Enhance Emotional Regulation and Resilience Among Street-involved Youth

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy to Enhance Emotional Regulation and Resilience Among Street-involved Youth
Electronically published journal article, but not part of an issue

No

Abstract

This book chapter describes dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), an evidence-based mental health intervention that shows promise in addressing the dramatic emotional needs of youth who are homeless. Mental health challenges such as depression, anxiety, and self-harm often interfere with the capacity of street-involved youth to engage in the full spectrum of health and social services intended to support them in exiting the street. While literature evaluating the effectiveness of DBT for homeless youth is limited, the treatment has demonstrated the capacity to decrease self-harm and suicidality, and to improve mental health indicators such as depression and anxiety. The chapter provides an overview of DBT, including individual therapy and group skills training, as well as crisis support and consultation team meetings. It then discusses adaptations made to the intervention to better meet the needs of street-involved youth. It also describes a study implementing DBT with street-involved youth across two agencies that provide services to this population. Results indicate that participants in the DBT intervention experienced a reduction in mental health distress that was maintained at four and 10 weeks post-intervention. The chapter concludes with a discussion of important considerations in implementing DBT in community settings.  

Accession number
25429
Authors
McCay, E., Aiello, A.
Type new
Book Chapter
Organization

Toronto, Canada: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness Press

Year published new
2018
Availability

Available for download free of charge from the Homeless Hub, a service of the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness at http://homelesshub.ca/sites/default/files/COH-MentalHealthBook.pdf.