“Stable housing is a foundation for family stability, not merely a reflection of it.”
Stable housing provides a foundation for health, well-being, and prosperity for children, families, and communities. Stable housing can positively affect a broad spectrum of outcomes for children and families, including academic performance, employment, physical, and mental health. Threats to stable and healthy housing are complex and intertwined with systemic and interpersonal factors.
Families experiencing housing instability face increased risk of their children being involved in the child welfare system . 81% of families with children entering care identified recent histories of housing instability, including crowding, homelessness, and evictions. Housing instability is also linked to delays in reunification; and foster care placement is also connected to youth homelessness.
If families experiencing housing instability are at greater risk of child maltreatment and placement into foster care, how can we take a systems approach to support families coping with housing instability, before getting involved in the child welfare system? Housing Opportunities Made to Enhance Stability (HOMES) is a systems change initiative focused on building new relationships, sharing ideas and knowledge, and starting new collaborations between housing and child welfare partners in the community. Housing as a Pathway to Prevent Child Maltreatment is a training ICFW Co-Director Gabriel McGaughey has delivered where participants learn about how brain science, strategic communication, systems change approaches, and design thinking have been used to connect child welfare, health, and housing in efforts to support child well-being.
View the presentation here.