Can mothers who are Homeless find success

From my perspective, mothers   need BOTH a stable place to feel secure in their physical environment and security in their emotional environment to feel successful. The same can be said of everyone, actually.

Poor single mothers who had experienced an episode of homelessness and had symptoms of depression, but had a work history of full-time employment, left shelters quickly and entered employment after a shelter episode.-Bogard et al. (2001)

Basically YES! And you should have known it would be yes or I am wasting copious amounts of time in my job…

Real quick, and just for kicks – let’s define SUCCESS.

  • To a poor parent the basic platform of SUCCESS that is being sought after is STABILITY in LIVING SITUATION which is co-occuring with re-occuring income. (basically stable housing they can afford)
  1. Apartment rental with a job
  2. Moving in with someone who has a job
  3. Shelter/ Transitional housing and Welfare payments
  4. Apartment with combination of employment and Entitlement Payment (SSI or Welfare)
  5. Combination of the above….

    Once a family knows where they will be sleeping and has a place to leave their belongings during the day – they can root themselves in the community.  The children have a neighborhood school and friendships that can keep them in schools and break the cycle of homelessness. And more good news for you – they have to eat and wear clothes and own school supplies – which means they will be spending money in the community, and that generates tax dollars for your area.

    • Sometimes `success requires extra steps. Poverty and homelessness  wears on a person – stresses them and even the security of home and employment doesn’t feel like success. Sometimes success is Internal Peace of Mind.  Success is living with dignity in what ever environment you are in.

    As a social worker, I try to help homeless parents search for housing, find employment to sustain the housing and offer connection with mental health, substance use, and domestic violence  therapy to help them feel successful.

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