ABOUT THIS PROJECT:
InvestigateWest’s “Generation Homeless” project was made possible by a fellowship from Seattle University.
Reporter Carol Smith was a 2010 recipient of SU’s Center for Strategic Communications Family Homelessness Fellowship for independent public interest journalism focused on homelessness. Seattle University’s program was funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. There were six fellowships and eight scholarships awarded to journalists and students to pursue work on this topic.
Smith teamed with SU students Emily Holt and Cassandra Little, who interned on the project. Together, the IW team spent more than three months examining issues of family homelessness in Washington. Their multi-media series looks at family homelessness through the lens of young adults – one of the most under-recognized segments driving the surge in homeless families in this state, and at the impact of this trend on children, and school systems around the state. IW’s multi-media report includes a 9-minute radio documentary, five-minute video piece, interactive data map, and distribution of written stories to multiple media partners, regionally and nationally for online and print publication.
Click on this link to hear Smith's piece produced for news partner KUOW-FM. The piece was the focus of KUOW's talk show "The Conversation," on Oct. 18 and was aired in the station's news cycle all day on Oct. 19. The story was in the lead position on Oct. 18 story on Seattlepi.com. The story ran Tuesday, Oct. 19 as the lead story on AOLnews.com, where it drew a large readership.
On Sunday, Oct. 24, two additional stories, one on on how homelessness is affecting school districts across the state (including an interactive map) and one on how homelessness affects the emotional and psychological development of children ran in Crosscut , Seattlepi.com, Walla Walla Union Bulletin, and the Yakima Herald-Republic. Newspaper partners in Walla Walla and Yakima also produced local stories on the issue in school districts in their areas.
A story by InvestigateWest's Emily Holt examining the impact on refugee and immigrant families appeared in The International Examiner, the newspaper of Northwest Asian American Communities in IW's first partnership with the region's ethnic media. The YMCA's Puget SoundOff, a blog for and by youth and young adults, published work by Holt and Little on homelessness issues for the refugee community and job training for homeless young adults.
In this series:
by Carol Smith
by Mike Kane and Carol Smith
by Carol Smith
by Carol Smith
by Brian Chin
by Carol Smith and KUOW
by Mike Kane
Help and Resources for the Homeless
If you’re in need of shelter, basic human services or assistance in Washington state, the 211 Community Information Line website, or call 2-1-1.
You can also call: 1-800-621-4636 or 206-461-3200.
Homeless families and children
Emergency shelter for young adults
Youth aging out of foster care
To find out more about ending homelessness, please visit these resources:
Wealth & Poverty | February 2013
“It was just common knowledge – when you turn 18, you’re done,” Sharayah Lane said. “After the checks stopped coming, we all went our separate ways."
End of the Line is a new series by Claudia Rowe asking what happens when teens get too old for foster care in Washington State.
Photo Credit: Jon Connell/Flickr
Environment | January 2013
Meet America's newest sharecroppers. Guys like Jared Bright who vie for control of the Pacific fishing industry's lower rungs, the only rungs that seem to be left. They don't own the halibut, not even when it lands in their boats.
Lee van der Voo uncovers absentee landlords, brokers and bankers, and fish quota that costs more than your house — realities that fly in the face of more official, rosy portrayals.
Health | November 2012
Kids with multiple sclerosis, historically an adult disorder, offer researchers a set of intriguing new clues about the disease that could lead, eventually, to better treatments.
With adolescent MS on the rise in the Northwest, Carol Smith meets a young patient who is learning to live with the disease at the age of 16, and the doctors and scientists trying to keep her healthy.
Environment | October 2012
In 1972, Congress enacted legislation to end water pollution. Forty years later, American rivers and lakes are still badly contaminated, and new threats to clean water are outpacing the Act's enforcers. Follow along as InvestigateWest and EarthFix investigate.
Environment | June 2012
As local governments trade away public parkland, the safeguards put in place by the Land and Water Conservation Fund to protect that land are full of holes.
Public Health | January 2012
The Prescription Epidemic
As Washington enacts the strongest prescription drug law in the country, InvestigateWest presents a six-month investigation into the origins of the prescription epidemic, the challenge it poses for communities, and what lessons other states might learn.