Youth Homelessness and Mental Health
Studies show that depression, anxiety, substance use, and post-traumatic stress disorder are among the most common mental health issues young people facing homelessness experience. More than one in three youth who come to Covenant House arrive with a mental health issue or diagnosis.
Homelessness takes an enormous toll on young people. Every year, thousands of youth experiencing homelessness die on the streets due to illness, assault, or suicide.
Many of the mental health issues these young people face are similar to those faced by adults experiencing homelessness. But children and youth are still developing physically, cognitively, psychologically, and emotionally. The risks and trauma they experience at this stage can produce long-lasting effects, including on their development and functioning.
Mental Health and Wellness at Covenant House
Covenant House staff, led by our Wellness Program, works closely with youth to not only address acute mental health issues, but also build healthy, lifelong habits and strategies. Our vision of wellness is multi-dimensional and holistic, encompassing lifestyle, mental & spiritual well-being, and the environment. Read our Wellness Policy to learn more.
Resources and data
Mental Health First Aid Resources
“The Mental and Physical Health of Homeless Youth: A Literature Review,” in Child Psychiatry & Human Development, November 2011
National Conference of State Legislatures, 2016
NAMI Nola Mental Health Library
24/7 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
How you can help
For more information on volunteering for Wellness programming at Covenant House New Orleans, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.