THE BIG PICTURE
- Families make up 34% of the total US homeless population.
- 87% of homeless families are headed by women. (Single-parent families are among the poorest in the nation and, as such, are extremely vulnerable to homelessness.)
- Homeless families are typically comprised of a woman under 30 with 2 children.
- Roughly 1.6 million children will experience homelessness in the course of 1 year.
- Researchers estimate that more than 200,000 children are homeless on any given day.
- 42% of children in homeless families are under age 6.
- Over 50% of homeless mothers have experienced a major depressive episode since becoming homeless.
- Over 1/3 of homeless mothers have a chronic physical condition.
- Families who have experienced homelessness have much higher rates of family separation.
- At least 30% of children in foster care could return home if their parents had access to housing.
- 92% of homeless mothers say they have experienced severe physical and/or sexual abuse.
- 53% of homeless mothers do not have a high school diploma.
Statistics provided by the National Center on Family Homelessness.
THE LOCAL PICTURE
- Women and children made up 55% of the total individuals served at UGM in 2013: 1,743 women and children out of 3,186 total.
- 148,027 meals served to women & children.
- 62,316 nights of shelter provided to women & children
Children experiencing homelessness are 4 times more likely to get sick than other children, 4 times more likely to have asthma and twice as likely to have an ear infection, according to the National Center on Family Homelessness. They are twice as likely to be hungry, 4 times more likely to show delays in development and 3 times as likely to have emotional and behavioral problems. By age 12, 83% have been exposed to at least one serious, violent event, and 25% have witness acts of violence within their family.
You might be interested in these posts on what UGM is doing to help homeless women and children: