10 Ways to Prevent a Homeless Child From Becoming a Homeless Adult
Preventing homelessness requires more than shelter, a hot meal, and a few extra dollars for a person to get by. Many adults that become homeless do so because they are lacking the love, support, and discipline needed to approach self-sufficiency with positive self-confidence. By fostering an atmosphere that promotes education and self worth, children will be hard-wired with the key components to avoid many of the circumstances that lead to homelessness in adulthood. Below is part 1 of a 2 part blog outlining a few things we can do as a community to prevent homelessness from reoccurring as homeless children approach adulthood.
- Community support—Did you ever hear the old cliché, “it takes the village to raise the child”? Well, this seemingly inane philosophy rings true in many ways. Most non-profits specializing in homelessness agree that it takes more than offering a warm meal and a soft pillow to prevent homelessness from reoccurring. With community support in areas like tutoring, life skills, and spiritual guidance, children are fostered into a safe secure environment that builds character and promotes optimism that teaches them to evolve into self-sufficiency.
- Solidarity—By treating children as our equals, they will not become fixed on the stressful reality that they are homeless. They will feel just as important and appreciated as any other child—as they should be—which will promote a healthy atmosphere and a positive outlook about how they approach goals.
- Positive Self-Esteem—By supporting our children with love, education, and spiritual guidance, they will regain their self-esteems and not focus too much on their circumstances. Building confidence gives them the tools to focus on their educational goals, which will eventually empower them to tackle more complex goals like higher education and successful careers.
- Let Children be Children---Childhood is a very important time for a person’s cognitive development. By not putting too many ‘adult’ expectations on them and letting them learn, play, and make mistakes as children should, they will not feel robbed of the vital components needed to approach adulthood successfully. They will make more wise decisions by not feeling the need to fulfill juvenile regrets later on in life. Even the children that do miss out on a childhood and eventually live successful lives will feel as though they missed out on important part of their youth. Everyone appreciates their fond childhood memories like camping, slumber parties, and after school playtime with friends. These are important experiences no child should miss out on.
- Family Support—There is no substitute for a parent’s love. Anyone can tell a child that he or she did a great job on a finger painting, but it does not carry the same emotional significance as it does if mom or dad says the same thing. Children carry deep emotional attachments to their parents and look to them for love, emotional support, and encouragement. Mom and Dad are the key proprietors of confidence building in their children, so their presence is imperative for them to grow up with good confidence and a positive outlook about their futures.