The role of social support : homeless youth and young adults in two communities in central Missouri
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While there is a great deal of research about the homeless in general, there is far less about homeless youth and young adults. Most of the research that has been done about this group has been done in large urban centers. Few studies of this group have been done in Missouri and those that have been done are in the urban areas of Missouri. Utilizing a convenience sample, thirty homeless individuals between the ages of 16 and 26 were interviewed in the medium sized city of Columbia and the slightly smaller community of Jefferson City. It was found those in the study were products of complicated childhoods shaped by abuse and inadequate parenting, however, many maintained contact with family and sought them out when social support was needed. Understanding the formal and informal sources of social support and services utilized by this group to get basic needs met was a central focus of this research. Those from Columbia were more likely to use formal supports and services to meet the need for food, shelter, transportation, medical needs and safety. Those from Jefferson City were more likely to use informal supports and services to meet the need for money, shelter, transportation, emotional support and safety.
Access is limited to the campus of the University of Missouri--Columbia.