Common Themes in the Life Stories of Unaccompanied Homeless Youth in High School: Implications for Educators

Common Themes in the Life Stories of Unaccompanied Homeless Youth in High School: Implications for Educators

In this study, we explored the life stories of unaccompanied homeless youth (UHY) who continued to attend high school despite no longer being in the custody of a parent or guardian. A qualitative approach allowed participants to share their life stories in their own words. Nine students (five males, four females) ranging in age from 17 to 20 were recruited from a community-based organization serving homeless youth to participate in individual interviews. Thematic analysis revealed nine themes reflecting chaotic, impoverished family environments marked by multiple forms of abuse juxtaposed with individual and extrafamilial factors promoting resilience. Implications for supporting UHY in schools are discussed.

JOURNAL: Contemporary School Psychology
PAGES: 1-12
PUBLICATION DATE: 2017