4 Million+ Young People Experience Homelessness Each Year

Youth homelessness is a complex issue. Each year, an estimated 4.2 million young people in the United States experience a form of homelessness. Many different factors contribute to youth homelessness, but some of our most vulnerable populations face the greatest risk.

homeless youth standing against wall | Covenant House - Youth Homelessness

4.2 million

At least 4.2 million young people experience a form of homelessness each year.


Nearly half of all young people who experience homelessness do so more than once.


About 50% of all unhoused youth were homeless for the first time in the past year.

How We Help Youth Experiencing Homelessness

We're the largest primarily privately-funded agency in the Americas providing shelter and support services to youth facing homelessness.

Crisis Care

Crisis care programs and services meet a young person's immediate needs and help to stabilize their situation. We provide emergency services and short-term housing in addition to nutritious food, clothing, medical care, mental health services, and legal aid to young people ages 16 to 22 who are experiencing homelessness or human trafficking.

Housing and Stability

Our shelter doors are always open, 24/7. Our housing program provides emergency shelter, short-term, transitional living, and permanent housing options to young people experiencing homelessness. We are expertly equipped to respond to the unique needs of young survivors of human trafficking, those who identify as LGBTQ+, and those who are pregnant or parenting solo.

Mental Health

Young people experiencing homelessness face complex stress and trauma in their everyday efforts to survive. We offer counseling, traditional talk therapy, and other wellness programs such as yoga, art and music therapy, religious and spiritual services, and physical fitness. In these activities, young people heal from the harm done to them while living unhoused and take control of their lives, build on their strengths, and nourish their self-confidence.

Education and Workforce Development

Advancing educationally and preparing for the world of work are key to a young person’s prospects for leaving homelessness behind. We create programs and build pathways that lead our young people to greater employment opportunities. Our strategy is to build programs that our youth can feel excited to participate in, that offer a livable wage and room to grow professionally, and ultimately help them become independent and sustainably exit homelessness.

Shelter Is Only the Beginning

From crisis to care: Find out what it's like when a young person enters our doors.

joyful youth | Covenant House - Youth Homelessness- Ann's Story

"The day I walked into the Covenant House crisis shelter in Philadelphia, I’ll never forgot how scared I was and how the staff made me feel so welcomed right away."

Who Is Most at Risk of Youth Homelessness?

The vast majority of youth do not become homeless by choice. The causes are complex and not due to a single incident or issue. But certain risk factors can increase a young person’s chances of experiencing homelessness.

These demographics are most at risk for becoming homeless:

LGBTQ+ youth

Pregnant and parenting youth

Young people of color


homeless youth during sunset | Covenant House = Youth Homelessness

Know the Issues That Drive Youth Homelessness

Young people experiencing homelessness face numerous challenges and barriers that hinder their journey toward sustainable independence and a hope-filled future.

former homeless youth entering Covenant House | Youth Homelessness

Be a Part of the Solution

Your gift today provides shelter and essential support services to young people facing homelessness.