A recent report from the University of Chicago’s Chapin Hall research center aims to
identify which youth are most likely to become homeless when transitioning from
foster care.

The “Midwest Study” is a long-term longitudinal study of former foster youth in
Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin. It follows more than 700 participants from 2002, when
they aged out of foster care, through 2011, when they were 26 years old.

The study found that 36% of participants had experienced at least one episode of
homelessness by the age of 26 (defined as sleeping in “a place where people
weren’t meant to sleep”, sleeping in a homeless shelter, or not having a regular

Researchers identified six factors that were associated with an increased risk of
becoming homeless:
· Being male
· Having symptoms of a mental health disorder
· Experiencing multiple placements while in foster care
· Experiencing physical abuse before entering foster care
· Having run away at least once from a foster care placement
· Engaging in delinquent behaviors

The study findings paint a grim picture for youth aging out of foster care, and show
that much needs to be done to prevent them from becoming homeless.

For the full study, please click here:

http://www.chapinhall.org/research/inside/predictors-homelessness-during-transition -foster-care-adulthood).