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In Focus

"See more clearly when you are informed"


Here IYC hopes to shine a spotlight on the often most forgotten members of our society, the unhoused. With over half a million and growing individuals shelterless in the United States this conversation is starting to take center stage in our politics. Below you will find key terms, statistics, and other useful tools to understand and talk about Homelessness. If you would like to know more, consider coming to an IYC event. Our next one can be found below in the section labeled Our Events. We host them virtually, on a wide range of topics, discussing policy, civics, and current events. 

Key Terms You Should Know

Home vs House:

Home is where you live and where you have an emotional attachment; homelessness is a misnomer; unhoused or houseless is a more accurate.

Housing Insecurity:

Not having a secure shelter due to various factors like low income, high housing costs, unstable neighborhoods, etc.


Refers to the lack of physical shelter, even temporarily. 'Homeless' implies a lack of permanent housing.

Hostile Architecture/
Defensive Design:

Features implemented into city and town planning designed to deter homeless people from sleeping in that location.

Permanent Supportive Housing:

An alternative solution to end homelessness that focuses on accessible permanent housing and coordinated services such as financial assistance and mental health treatment.

Homeless person sitting on bag

Moments In History

1640 - The first recorded instance of homelessness in the land that is now the U.S.

1965 - Department of Urban Development (HUD) created to provide public housing under Johnson's Great Society Plan.

2022 - The Federal Strategic Plan All In is created, laying out a strategy for everyone having access to a home.

1955 - Release of Lady & The Tramp, providing a 'positive' representation of homelessness for children.

2020 - COVID-19 pandemic creates instability and oversaturation of an already failing system.



Cost of incarceration for homeless people in FL


Cost of a $15/hr full-time job

Likelihood that a person

who is homeless will be a

crime victim compared to a

non-homeless person



# of Homeless

in the United States


# of Homeless Children

in New York City

Over 40%

Approximate percent of people in homeless shelters or unsheltered who held a job in the same year they were homeless

Top 3 Causes

#1 Lack of affordable housing

#2 Unemployment

#3 Mental illness




kitten being shown to homeless man



Charitable Giving

Notable Names

Chris Gardner
Ella Fitzgerald
Robin Williams
Ali Forney
Jimmy Carter

Chris Gardner

Ella Fitzgerald

Robin Williams

Ali Forney

Jimmy Carter


Woman sitting on couch
Picture of a tent
Clip art of two hands holding house
Person being served food ladled from pot
Homeless man camping on city street

Our Events



Further Resources

Homelessness Infographic

Share what you have learned about Homelessness. Our Infographic has been designed to be shared easily by printing, emailing, or posting on social media. Click on the image to view or download the PDF File. (Not for commercial use.)

Homelessness Infographic

Craftivism Event Video

As you make your own scarf, you will learn more about the issue of homelessness. You can follow the instructions to make a version of this craft with your own supplies. No experience necessary. You can also make an event out of it yourself by hosting your own Craftivism: Homelessness Discussion Party. Feel free to share this video with others! (Not for commercial use) 

Take Action

Stranger shares food with homeless man

Volunteer and donate items that centers need (call ahead for maximum impact!).

Homeless man poses with sign in subway

Research local candidates and their positions on funding homeless services and affordable housing.

Hands Unity Friendship

Commit to a weekly act to help raise awareness about the unhoused.

Tent in alley

Help a homeless person today!

Friends sitting together

Share our Homelessness Infographic with friends, family, and anyone and everyone you think would appreciate becoming more informed!

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