Youth homelessness is a serious problem in Texas, affecting urban and rural communities alike. The state’s failure to prevent it, or aid those experiencing homelessness, often leads to unnecessary and costly consequences, including academic failure and dropout, criminal or juvenile justice system involvement, foster care involvement and physical and mental health challenges.
Working collaboratively with youth and valuing their perspectives is a key part of the solution to the state's foster care problem. Young people are telling us something when they run from care, and it is time to start listening. They often know what works best for them and research suggests that allowing youth to participate in decisions about their lives may help them heal.