This Friday, June 17, Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) will host a congressional briefing entitled “Voices of Youth: A Discussion of Homelessness and the Power of Education.” The presenters will consist of formerly homeless, unaccompanied youth from around the country who are currently enrolled in college. The students will discuss their experiences with homelessness and their success in obtaining high school diplomas. Their stories will provide insight into the struggles they have faced as well as the resources they utilized to successfully complete high school.

The Alliance, the National Network for Youth, the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth, and Covenant House have all endorsed a proposal to provide an increase in funding for the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (RHYA) programs. A portion of that increase would be to stabilize unaccompanied homeless youth in housing so that they can work to complete high school. The Alliance hopes that this briefing will educate Members of Congress on the need for and benefits of such assistance.

U.S. Senators and their staff members have been invited to attend the briefing, and the Alliance is asking advocates to encourage their congressional delegations to attend.

If you wish to invite your Senators or their staff members to attend, please contact Swaroop Vitta at for additional details.

More Information on the Presenters

Barb Dexter, Secondary School Specialist with the Anchorage School District’s Child in Transition/Title I Homeless Program will moderate the youth’s discussion. The panel will include youth from Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, and Washington.


June 13, 2011

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