Action Needed

  • Sign your organization on to a letter to U.S. Congress to show your support for federal funding for youth experiencing homelessness. Sign and on share this with your network: bit.ly/2ntj4dg

  • Send a letter either via fax or email. Use this letter as a template. Please put it on your letterhead and personalize with your specific local program and community needs.

  • Share this Action Alert with your network: bit.ly/2vSlD9F


ACTION ALERT: Send a letter US Congress to tell them to house homeless youth: bit.ly/1nyxx4n #EndYouthHomelessness

ACTION ALERT: Homeless youth need housing! Tell US Congress homeless youth are a priority: bit.ly/1nyxx4n #EndYouthHomelessness

ACTION ALERT: Urge Congress to make homeless youth a priority in the FY 2017 budget! bit.ly/1nyxx4n #EndYouthHomelessness

FY 2018 Funding Requests

  • $165 million for Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (RHYA) programs
  • $85 million for the McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth (EHCY) program
  • $40 million to continue implementation of the HUD Youth Homelessness Demonstration Project.
  • $2.6 billion for HUD’s McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Grants program.
  • Report language in the T-HUD appropriations bill specifying that youth aged 24 and under and families headed by youth age 24 and under shall not be required to provide third party documentation to establish their eligibility under 42 U.S.C.11320(a) or (b) to receive service.
  • Report language in the T-HUD appropriations bill specifying that unaccompanied youth aged 24 and under or families headed by youth aged 24 and under who are living in unsafe situations may be served by any Continuum of Care (CoC) program.

Current Status

 July 17, 2017 Update

Last week the U.S. House of Representatives Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations Subcommittee (Labor-HHS-ED) passed a fiscal year 2018 (FY18) spending bill that provides important funding for youth and young adult homelessness programs. This legislation, which funds important programs impacting youth and young adults experiencing or at risk of homelessness, will:
  • Maintain $119 million for Runaway and Homeless Youth Act programs;
  • Maintain $77 million for Education for Homeless Children and Youth Act grants;
  • Make cuts to important workforce development funding including the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Adult and Youth formula funding streams by about 5 percent, Reintegration of Ex-Offender Grants by 7 percent and SCSEP by 25 percent;
  • Eliminate the Teen Pregnancy Prevention (TPP) Program, currently funded at $101 million, and Title X Family Planning Program, currently funded at $286.5 million.
These cuts to TPP and Title X are vital programs that provide young women education and resources that give them the ability to decide if, when, and under what circumstances to get pregnant.

Read March 16, 2017 Update.

Why RHYA & EHCY Are Vital

RHYA & EHCY are the ONLY Federal Laws Targeted to Unaccompanied Youth. Congress first enacted the RHYA in 1974 and has regularly reauthorized it to ensure a basic level of support for unaccompanied youth regardless of their state of origin or residence. Few states have established funding streams targeted to unaccompanied youth.  Only 25% of RHYA applicants receive funding due to the limited resources available.  Only 22% of school districts receive EHCY subgrants.

RHYA Projects are Facing Overwhelming Unmet Need. The basic living needs of too many of our nation’s homeless youth are not being met. RHYA-funded Basic Center Programs have turned away 14,855 youth since FY 2010 due to a lack of a bed, and RHYA-funded Transitional Living Programs have turned away 28,488 youth since FY 2010 due to a lack of a bed.

RHYA Projects are Cost Effective Alternatives to Custodial Care and Arrest. The average cost per year of juvenile incarceration is $87,600 per year ($240 per day) whole community-based alternatives cost $15,000 to $30,000 per year ($41 to $82 per day).

RHYA Projects Use Federal Funds to Leverage Community Resources.  RHYA projects succeed due to partnerships created among families, schools, community-based organizations, faith communities, law enforcement agencies, businesses, and volunteers.

The capacity of communities to serve homeless youth is only limited by the resources available, not by the expertise of how to serve our homeless youth well. Only 25% of applicants to receive RHYA grant money receive a grant because the resources are so limited. Grant applications scoring 100, 99, 98, 97 . . . out of 100 are being denied funding because there is not enough resources for communities to serve homeless youth.

The FY 2016 Budget Included Historic Provisions for Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness

In FY 2016, Congress appropriated $70 million for EHCY and $119 million for RHYA – $5 million increases for each program. These funding levels represent the first new investments since 2009 and do not begin to match the increase in demand.

  • Currently, only 22 percent of school districts receive direct support through the EHCY program. A recent GAO Report found that school districts struggle to identify and serve homeless students due to lack of capacity. Per pupil funding has decreased from $91 per child in 2006, to $53 per child in 2013.
  • RHYA-funded Basic Center Programs have turned away over 14,855 youth since FY 2010 due to a lack of a bed, and RHYA-funded Transitional Living Programs have turned away over 28,488 youth since FY 2010 due to a lack of a bed.

Partner with this campaign to keep this good momentum going!