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Our Projects

Through our partnerships, the Covenant House Institute will produce reliable, accurate, and up-to-date data that will enhance programming, influence public policy, and educate shareholders. The Institute is closing the gaps in homeless youth research.

Current Institute Projects

The Covenant House Institute is proud to embark on the following projects:


University of Alaska Anchorage

  • Partners analyzing client data collected by site from 1998 to 2008 as the first stage in a research project focused on the migration of rural populations into urban centers and a youth homelessness project funded by a National Science Foundation grant to ISER and the university research fund.


University of Southern California

  • Partners analyzing data from surveys conducted with outreach clients. Data provide baseline information on client characteristics and needs, particularly related to transience and substance abuse. Research funded by university research grant. Findings also used in federal proposal for multisite project.


Georgia State University

  • Partners working with Covenant House Georgia to develop an enhanced client data-collection system. This system will be used to analyze data collected in fiscal year 2009 by the site as the first stage of a research project focused on youth entering the Crisis Center. Partners are also assisting the site in constructing a satisfaction survey for existing Covenant House clients.


National Autonomous University of Mexico

  • Partners developing a proposal for a research study on the prevalence of homelessness among youth in Mexico, including the number of homeless street youth, reasons for homelessness, agencies working with this population, and methodologies used. The proposal will include additional partnerships with other international and nonprofit organizations as well as government representatives.


Wayne State University

  • Partners analyzing client data collected by site as the first stage in a research project focused on education. In fall 2009, plans were made to collect an independent set of data on the characteristics of outreach and crisis youth.

New York

Columbia University – Foster Care Study

  • Dr. Ron Thompson has begun the first phase of a three-phase intervention project looking at risk factors for youth entering Covenant House from the foster care system. The project is fully funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

Fordham University – Mother/Child Study

  • Pilot study of well-being outcomes for mothers and children in the Rights of Passage program to begin data collection in June. Outcomes will include child behavior, parenting skills, coping strategies, and support. Applying for funding from the university research fund.


National Autonomous University of Nicaragua-Managua

  • Partners developing a proposal for a baseline study of the characteristics of youth who were taken in at Casa Alianza Nicaragua in fiscal year 2008-2009.

Polytechnic University of Nicaragua

  • First research project will be a comparative evaluation of the results obtained by Casa Alianza Nicaragua's Santo Domingo community project. Funding for this research project will be provided by the Italian Federation of Therapeutic Communities, which funded the original Santo Domingo community project intervention.
  • Partners developing a proposal for a follow-up study of youth who leave Casa Alianza Nicaragua. The study would include a comparative analysis of how the youths' lives and families have changed as a result of Casa Alianza's interventions.


Baylor College of Medicine

  • Partners convening all medical directors from Covenant House sites to do a multisite research project focused on health issues related to homeless youth.


National Coalition: University of Alabama (Coordinator), Adelphi University, University of Southern California, University of Texas at Austin, and Wayne State University

  • Partner is a national coalition of established researchers of homeless youth. Current project focuses on utilization of social networking technology to implement substance abuse intervention and track long-term outcomes of homeless youth. Stage 1 to include two Covenant House sites for nine months. Other Covenant House sites to be added incrementally. Partner has submitted a proposal for funding to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.