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Welfare Reform on the Web (December 2010): Homelessness - overseas

Voices from the periphery: prospects and challenges for the homeless youth service sector

K. Gharabaghi and C. Stuart

Children and Youth Services Review, vol. 32, 2010, p. 1683-1689

Services for homeless young people in most Ontario communities exist at the margins of much larger, institutionalised service sectors for children, youth and families. Given its focus on transitionally-aged young people (16-24), the sector finds itself on the periphery of both children's and adult services. As a result of its peripheral position, the sector is constantly seeking its place in a continuum of services characterised by major gaps and limitations. Service providers within the sector have had to develop highly creative approaches to navigating the system of funding opportunities and meeting needs. This paper gives voice to service providers and the young people they engage with in order to articulate the challenges facing this informal component of an otherwise formalised service system.

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