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Homeless Youth in America

Today in the United States nearly one out of every 30 people under the age of 18 are homeless. That is almost 2.5 million school-aged children who have nowhere to live, or no permanent home. The United States is one of the wealthiest countries in the developed world with a GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of $16.8 trillion, but it also has the second highest child poverty rate in the developed world (Homeless but not Hopeless: Homeless Youth in America, Philips). The homeless youth in America face many troubles when it comes to education, food, sexual assault, and substance abuse. Many homeless youth and their families struggle with food insecurity as they have no real way to acquiring and prepa

Starvation Fixed with Obesity

Parents around the nation, struggling to make ends meet. What happens when the paycheck won't allow for a typically sized family to eat? What happens when the only food available is the cheapest, which happens to be fast food. No nutritionally balanced meal is at the same price of a three-dollar burger from a fast food chain like McDonald's or Burger King. When resources are low, parents are forced to use what they have to provide, but what happens when what they have is not enough, for its simply harder to eat healthy when you are at a low income, or in other words, poor. The figures from the Health & Social Care Information Centre show 25% of children in more deprived areas are obese. So,

Homeless: Not One Size Fits All

When many of us here the word “homeless” applied to a person, a specific story often come mind immediately. This individual must have lost their job, lost their house, never had a house or doesn’t want to work. Those are often the first thoughts of many people when they think of “homeless”. However, this is not always the face of “homeless”. In just one day in 2016 over 31, 500 women fleeing domestic violence situations found refuge in either a shelter or a transitional housing program. These were the lucky ones who had resources to go to in their city and who knew that they had resources out there that could help them. Many women fleeing domestic violence do not have resources they can use

World Hunger- A Major Unattended Issue

For most people, hunger can be defined as the grumbling sound of the stomach that indicates the need to fill their bellies. However, for millions of people worldwide, it is the physical and psychological distress that creates a sense of euphoria in their guts cause by the lack of nutritional and economic resources. The simple definition of hunger can be scarcity of food in a country. Few causes of hunger Poverty: Poverty is the major cause of any crisis so it should not be a surprise if it makes the top list of world hunger problem as well. Poverty and hunger go hand in hand. Those living in poverty often face hunger, as they cannot afford nutritious food for themselves and their families. F

Housing Our Heroes

At any given moment, a large number of Americans are overseas, separated from their families for extended periods of time. In addition to giving up a peaceful life surrounded by their families, these people are willing to sacrifice their lives, and many of them do, driven by an intense love for and desire to protect their country. You would expect that these courageous men and women would be warmly welcomed and accorded all necessities for a comfortable life, given everything that they have done for their country. Unfortunately, this assumption is incorrect. In fact, veterans are at a higher risk for homelessness compared to the general population. They are overrepresented even within the ho

Abuse of Over-the-Counter Drugs in Schools

Prescription drug misuse by young teens and even children has become a national health problem. According to MedScape, the rates for new users of prescription drugs are now almost equal to those for new users of marijuana, and prescription drugs are now the second most common drugs (after marijuana) used by teenagers to get high. The Partnership for a Drug-Free America states that the abuse of prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) medications is an "entrenched behavior" among America's youth. The Office of National Drug Control Policy reports that most adolescents who misuse these products are getting them easily and for free. Data from the last decade shows rates of middle school substanc

Is it Really Possible to Turn Rags into Riches?

Homelessness does not have to be a final destination for everyone. In fact, only 16% of the overall homeless population are considered chronically homeless (SAMHSA, 2014). This means that they have either been without housing for at least 12 continuous months, or have experienced 4 episodes of homelessness in 3 years. Many previously homeless citizens have been able to find housing and develop successful careers. Learning about others’ tales of conquering their struggles can inspire a new group to do the same. Steve Jobs, a man whose net worth was estimated to be $10 billion at his death, was once homeless (Dodds, 2017). Before founding the iconic tech company Apple in 1975, Jobs was a colle

Living the Nightmare

For most of us, fear for our physical safety is not something we have to think about daily. Perhaps when we are walking across a dark parking lot at night, or when we hear of a disturbing crime on television we then become fearful. But then we lock our doors, arm our security systems, shut our curtains and return to our feelings of safety. While this should be a right afforded to everyone – the right to be free from harm – it is a luxury for those who are homeless. Recent statistics show that over 62% of those who are homeless have witnessed a violent attack on another homeless individual. The definition of “violent attack” for this statistic was the use of force by an individual against a h

Mental health and Homelessness

People experiencing homelessness are more susceptible to poorer mental health conditions than general population. The difficulties faced by them and the environmental conditions they live in, can trigger mental illness or worsen the existing conditions. In general, 30-35% of those experiencing homelessness, and up to 75% of women experiencing homelessness, have mental illness. 20-25% of people experiencing homelessness suffer from concurrent disorders like addictions and mental illness. However, it is very important to know that the relation between mental illness and homelessness is purely correlational not causational. Homelessness is not the sole reason for mental illness and not all the

From Deployment to Unemployment: Why Are So Many Veterans Homeless?

In 1863, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed: “Honor to the Soldier, and Sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his country's cause. Honor also to the citizen who cares for his brother in the field, and serves, as he best can, the same cause...” More than 150 years later, we as a country have seemingly lost respect for our veterans. According to the National Coalition for Homeless, almost one quarter, or 23%, of the US homeless population are veterans (2012). In addition, approximately 1.4 million veterans today are at risk of becoming homeless because of poverty, a lack of support networks, and overcrowding in substandard housing (National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, 2016). The heroes who once fo

The Silent Cry of “Me Too”

As 2018 removed the barrier placed on women’s voices, society has resounded with the cry of “Me Too.” For one of the first times in known history, woman after woman has joined together in solidarity, calling out those who have violated their rights in the worst way possible. And this time, society listened, convicting prominent sexual offenders and delivering them their due punishment, simultaneously espousing the concept of respect for women and making a greater effort to protect women’s rights. However, amidst this deafening roar of wronged women seeking justice, the cries of the homeless who are undergoing the same kind of abuse fall on deaf ears. Sexual abuse is a topic that the majority

Effects of Emotional and Psychological Abuse

Some of the deepest wounds are caused by words. Child emotional abuse is an often misunderstood form of trauma that can cause damage to a child’s developing brain, leading to long-term learning difficulties, problematic behaviors, and increased incidences of physical and mental health issues. (PreventChildAbuse) The emotional and psychological abuse of children can lead to much more than mental health issues, it can also cause lifelong cognitive development issues. Abuse often includes manipulation, threatening, undermining confidence, and the controlling of another person. Emotional abuse is frequently seen in parent-child relationships where an authoritative figures misuse their supremacy

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