This month, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded $60.3 million to build systems to end youth homelessness in 16 communities across the country, including four in rural areas.
The funding was awarded through HUD’s Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program (YHDP) to support a wide range of housing programs, including rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, transitional housing, and host homes. The goal of YHDP is to help communities develop and implement a coordinated community approach to prevent and end youth homelessness, with special attention on equitable strategies to help the most vulnerable youth, including BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and differently abled youth.
YHDP relies upon recommendations provided by young people who have experienced homelessness. The applications were reviewed by HUD, along with young people who have experienced homelessness, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Education, and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness. In addition, all YHDP communities are required to establish youth action boards, in which young people with lived experience lead the community effort to design, implement, and improve programs and policies to end youth homelessness in their communities.