Facing Homelessness

“What is the meaning of home to you? What is the one essential ingredient of home?”

In 2016, I led an alternative social justice oriented spring break trip for 14 undergraduates with my friend Emma Robinson in the city of Seattle. Our focus was on understanding the complex issues that stem youth homelessness. Over 34% of the homeless population are under the age of 24. Our trip consisted of meetings with community leaders, LGTBQ youth shelters, adult shelters, professors, affordable housing organizations, large and small nonprofits such as the Gates Foundation to an organization sheltered in the basement of a church called Facing Homelessness. Each day of discussion, conversation, and service was followed by nightly reflections. We stayed in the children’s room of the Crown Hill United Methodist Church near the University of Washington and cooked our own meals.

In preparation for the trip, I co-prepared a booklet for the students, holding weekly meetings leading up to the trip.