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YAH Study 16-17

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Heather Mosher

on 10 June 2017

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Transcript of YAH Study 16-17

.
Improving young people's access to information and services in Connecticut
A study by the Youth Action Hub and Youth/Young Adult Homelessness Workgroup
INTRODUCTION
Share the results of our study and its implications for improving young people's access to information and service referral in Connecticut
But first,
some
background
STUDY FOCUS
Understand barriers to accessing information and services for young people (14-24 years old)
Purpose of this presentation
Who We Are
STUDY SAMPLE
RESULTS
RECOMMENDATIONS
The
Youth Action Hub
is a center of
research and advocacy at the Institute for Community Research. It is staffed and led
by young people (16-24 years old) trained
as action researchers to contribute
youth voice in research and policy advocacy
around youth homelessness in Connecticut.
METHODOLOGY
Partners/Funder:
Youth / Young Adult Homelessness Workgroup
a statewide coalition of youth-serving
organizations (housing, health/mental health,
education, child welfare, justice system,
addiction services, policy analysts) focused
on ending youth homelessness
Identify effective strategies to improve access to information and services
The goals of the study are to:
Young parents
DCF-involved
Justice system-involved
Minors
Young adults
Housing insecure
LGBTQ+
Follow us on Twitter:
@YouthActionHub
or on our Facebook at:
www.facebook.com/YouthActionHub

Mixed Method Approach
Group Interviews
Justice system-involved
Young parents
LGBTQ+
Minors

-min Online Survey
Qualitative
Quantitative
Obtain an indepth understanding of the barriers for young people to access housing-related information and services

Why Use Group Interviews?
Gather input from young people on ways to improve access to information and services
Why Use a Survey?
To learn how a large number of young people in Connecticut access information and services, their needs and expectations for service access.

Examples of questions addressed by survey:
How many young people are aware of 211?
How many young people have used 211?
Of those people who have used 211, how many would use 211 again if they needed to?
Human Subjects Protection
Approved by Institute for Community Research's Institutional Ethics Review Board (IRB)
All staff trained and certified in the ethical conduct in research to protect participants
Participant Recruitment
Direct outreach to youth in Hartford
Referrals by youth/young adult service providers
Peer referrals
High school classes (Bulkely HS, Domus Academy)
STRATEGIES
INCENTIVES
Group interview: $25 + snacks
Survey: Pizza + enter Sweepstakes to win a prize
Total N =191
6
15
18
%
16
%
17
%
35
%
8
%
3
%
2
%
1
%
Question
What factors contribute to the accessibility & success of an information and referral
(I & R) system for young people?
In other words:
What do young people want or need from an I & R system?
What are easy and youth-friendly ways for young people to access information and services?
Research
(n=27)
(n=164)
164
survey respondents
Race/Ethnicity
33%
29%
Latino
White
18%
16%
Black
Multiracial
Gender Identity
Male
Female
Nonbinary / Genderfluid
4%
46%
50%
Proactive
A
C
C
E
S
S
Responsive
Personalized
Caring
I & R
housing
food
employment
mental health
1
3
2
legal
transportation
79%
Findings suggest that an accessible I & R system for young people would:
Reach out to young people in places where they are at
Use communication channels that young people use

Results show that schools, libraries and community centers would be places to reach young people
The internet, social media, email, texting, and using an"app" were different ways that young people were likely to use to get information and referrals.
"A lot of teenagers go on Facebook... [211 could post] ads on Facebook."
Use Facebook to reach young people
Facebook is used by most (76%) participants.
Personalized and Caring
Findings indicate that an accessible I & R system for young people would offer:
Face-to-face / a physical place to go
Staff that are relatable
Ability to talk to the same staff consistently
Guidance and support
Proactive
Face-to-face / Physical Location
"I wanna be able to SEE who you are... Eye to eye contact just shows one person that you're listening, like you're hearing them. If you can't show eye contact or I don't know who you are, how am I going to be able to trust you with my life, with my information, with my identity?
"Talking over the phone, it's not really gonna help... It would actually be better if you would be able to go see the person you're actually talking to to get that help. Cuz over the phone, it's not... you know... that helpful."
Participant 1: "I'd rather go in person to talk to them in person and see."
P2: "Me too."
P3: "Me, I like both. I feel like if I go in person, you can actually hear what I'm
trying to say.
Staff that are Relatable
"Just having someone who can relate with you, even a little bit can be such a huge difference, rather than someone who's like literally gone through nothing that you've been through at all."
"[To be able to talk to] people that went through what we're going through now, who experienced it. Like other adults who are trying to [help] teens and they know how it is because they've been through this. So they can relate."
"To have someone to relate to [is] a lot better than just sending [you] somewhere to get answers."
Young People Prefer to Talk to:
42%
knowledgeable peer
56%
knowledgeable adult
21%
okay talking with someone
do not know
"[Age doesn't] matter to me. As long as you can relate, I don't see an age limit."
Talk to Same Staff Consistently
"Explaining over and over what happened is difficult."
"I'm not gonna go through multiple people."
"That's when I stopped going to (name of program) cuz they kept switching people. I'm not going to keep starting over and expressing myself all over and over...As soon as I felt comfortable, they switched it...I switched [staff] three times. After the third time, I never went back."
Guidance and Support
"Everything shouldn't have to go through 211. [It] doesn't really help you, by referring you to this number or that number... How is that helping? I mean, it’s helpful because they are giving you [numbers to] resources, but at the same time, it’s not helpful cuz there’s no actions being took. You’re just giving me numbers."
"Someone who can actually help you change."
"You can't trust anybody...We've been let down... multiple times."
"[I want someone to] sit there and explain to me, and basically guide me. 'Okay, when you go here, this is what you're going to ask for'.
"When you come from somewhere that you don't have family to lean on, you try to lean on somebody that's willing to help and be there for you."
Responsive
Findings suggest that an accessible I & R system for young people would:
Respond immediately/quickly
Follow up after interaction with young person
Remove barriers to accessing housing services, such as:
Transportation
Language
Discrimination
Documentation requirements
Follow Up
Lack of Transportation
Language Barriers
Discrimination
Lack of Proper Documentation
"211 doesn’t follow up with you to make sure that you got help, made sure you’re okay. Or call you later on and like, “Are you good?” or something like that. To make sure that [your situation is] at least better than what it was a few hours ago when they called."
"Simple things like you want them to call back [when they] tell you they're gonna call back. I'm waiting there, nothing."
Of those survey respondents who had experienced housing instability (n=70):
Nearly half reported that a lack of reliable transportation made it difficult to access housing/shelter resources.
47%
11%
reported that language barriers made it difficult to access housing resources
Of those survey respondents who had experienced housing instability (n=70):
*Language preference: Spanish
Of those survey respondents who had experienced housing instability (n=70):
Of those survey respondents who had experienced housing instability (n=70):
20%
34%
felt discriminated against while trying to access resources
The way I look/dress (50%) (7 of 14)
Race (43%) (6 of 14)
Age (36%) (5 of 14)
Mental health (29%) (4 of 14)
Gender identity (21%) (3 of 14)
Reasons:
had difficulty accessing information or services due to lack of proper documentation
(n=24)
(n=14)
of full sample (n=164)
of full sample (n=164)
Survey participation per Counties in Connecticut
of full sample (n=164)
UH
No UH
UH = participants who
experienced
unstable housing
No UH = participants who
never experienced
unstable housing
Number of
participants
Percent of
total sample
70
94
43%
57%
Proportion of young people in sample who
had experienced housing instability
RECOMMENDATIONS
Young people
who need help
2-1-1
Information
& Referrals
Schedule
Assessment
Helpline
Increase Alternate
Access Points
School
Internet;
Google
Community Center /
Library
Social network
Word of Mouth
(friends, family)
(teachers, counselors)
Expand Crisis
Intervention
EMPS
Youth
Specialist
Team
DSS
WIC
ETC.
Increase
Transportation
Street
Outreach
Teams
Help received?
No
Yes
Follow-Up
Follow-Up
System Success
Young people
who need help
2-1-1
Information
& Referrals
Schedule
Assessment
Helpline
Where Youth
Turn To
School
Internet;
Google
Community Center /
Library
Social network
Word of Mouth
(friends, family)
(teachers, counselors)
Summary of Findings
Lack of awareness of 211
Do not trust - Prefer talking to someone they know
Feels impersonal - Prefer face-to-face / physical locations
Need follow-up, more personalized help / guidance
Prefer to talk to same person and not retell story
Lack of immediate help
DSS
WIC
ETC.
Help received?
No
Yes
Unable to Find Help
Young people
who need help
2-1-1
Information
& Referrals
Schedule
Assessment
call / website
Coordinated Entry
System in CT
Helpline
Raise Awareness
Youth
Navigator
Recommendations
Young people
who need help
2-1-1
Information
& Referrals
Schedule
Assessment
call / website
Coordinated Access
System in CT
Helpline
Proactive
Survey results indicate that many young people:
3. Do not use helplines to get information or
help when they need it
4. Would hesitate to use a helpline because they
lack knowledge about helplines or do not
feel comfortable asking for help
1. Are not aware of 211
Top 5 Reasons Why Young People Would
Hesitate to Use a Helpline
1. I do not know what they can do to help (25%)
2. I do not feel comfortable asking for help (19%)
3. I don't want to burden others (19%)
4. I do not want to talk to someone I do not know (14%)
5. I do not know what helplines exist or how to access
them (12%)
5%
of survey respondents said that they
would ask "no one" if they needed help
"I thought 211 was set up for food... I never knew it was more than that. I'm used to calling them...to find doctors, stuff that's in the area that can help. I never knew they were more than a small little thing."
"A lot of younger kids ... just wait for somebody to notice... Kids act up in school so people notice...and that's how people end up getting help. We just don't come out and simply say what we're going through."
"A lot of my friends are going through pretty much the same thing I was going through...and don't speak up cuz they're embarrassed. That's how I was.... I just kept it all in, and it was even hard for me to tell Peacebuilders about it, cuz you know, it's kind of like... embarrassing. When you are going through things like that, you don't want other people to know... My first two years that's what it was and then my third year Peacebuilders came in."
2. Are likely to use other means to get help before
using helplines
Do young people not use 211 because they do not want to 'call' to get help?
85%
"It's not the phone [that makes 211 inaccessible.]
It's the system that is set up."
of participants said that they were likely to
call
to get information / help
Modes of Communication that Young People Would "Likely" Use to Get Information & Referrals
Call
85%
81%
Search a website
79%
Email
76%
76%
Social media
Text
70%
Physical location
67%
Use an "app"
48%
Chat/IM
Proactive
Survey results indicate that many young people:
1. Are not aware of 211
2. Are likely to use other means to get help before
using helplines
Proactive
Survey results indicate that many young people:
1. Are not aware of 211
2. Are likely to use other means to get help before
using helplines
3. Do not use helplines to get information or
help when they need it
Proactive
Survey results indicate that many young people:
1. Are not aware of 211
Awareness of 211
54%
of participants
were NOT aware of 211
Primary Places
where young people would go to get help
36%
25%
21%
17%
School
Library
Medical / Health Clinic
Community Center
Primary Ways
that young people get information / help
58%
Internet / Website
46%
Social Media
37%
Word of Mouth
18%
Helpline
Use of Helplines among Young People
Of participants who knew of at least one helpline (n=131):
Of participants who were not aware of any helplines (n=33):
reported that they
have actually used
a helpline to get information, counseling or referral to services.
reported that they
would use
a helpline to get
information or ask for help/resources.
35%
(n=46)
42%
(n=14)
Use of Helplines among Young People
80%
of participants were aware of at least one helpline
(n=57)
Parent
Justice
system-
involved
LGBTQ+
DCF-
involvement
Student
(n=36)
80
40
50
70
60
12
20
30
10
(n=20)
%
(n=80)
(n=109)
Other Demographic Characteristics
Proportion of participants in group (%)
22
%
35
%
49
%
66
%
14-17 yrs old
18-20 yrs old
21-24 yrs old
Proportion of participants in group (%)
41
(n=68)
(n=38)
(n=58)
Age Groups
%
23
%
35
%
"[211 is an] easy number to remember, but no one knows it. That's the problem."
"On websites...
when you're looking up shelters, none of them mention 211."
Awareness of 211
Focus group
participants said:
1. Increase Points of Access
2. Raise Awareness
3. 2-1-1 Youth Specialist Team
4. Expand Crisis Intervention Services
5. Create a Youth Navigator Position
The Melville Charitable Trust
Summary of Findings
Of the participants who were housing unstable in the last year:

met HUD's definition of literal homelessness

had couch-surfed and considered themselves safe.

44%
26%
Full transcript