Early Childhood

Case Studies in Supporting Infants, Toddlers, and Expectant Parents Experiencing Homelessness

This series of case studies by SchoolHouse Connection highlights programs in Chicago, IL; Fort Worth, TX; and Boston, MA emphasizing early childhood development, family support, and removing barriers to service access. Learn how these initiatives foster family well-being and success through a two-generation approach, integrating home visiting, housing support, and early childhood education and care.

Read the Case Studies

Ninety-percent of brain growth occurs during the first three years of life, making these years a critical period with a profound impact on lifelong health and learning. Yet infancy is also the time during which a person is most likely to experience homelessness in the United States, and the Americans who are most at risk of eviction are infants and toddlers. Homelessness during these early years jeopardizes children’s long-term health and development, and creates barriers to accessing early childhood development programs that can mitigate the impact of homelessness while making crucial connections to housing and services. In fact, an analysis from SchoolHouse Connection and Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan estimates that there are over 360,000 infants and toddlers experiencing homelessness nationally, yet only 11.45% are enrolled in an early developmental program. 

SchoolHouse Connection has created this ongoing series of case studies to offer successful, real-world practices and strategies for increasing access to early childhood development, housing, and other services for infants, toddlers, and families experiencing homelessness. The programs highlighted here and those forthcoming in the series all emphasize a two-generation approach to service delivery, recognizing that addressing the needs of both child and caregiver contributes to overall family well-being and success. Each case study offers lessons learned and provides starting points for taking action.

Case Studies

  1. Adapting Home Visiting Programs to Meet the Needs of Parents and Families Experiencing Homelessness
    • Home Visiting for Homeless Families (Chicago, Illinois)
  2. Integrating the Needs of Families Experiencing Homelessness into Program Design and Delivery
    • Center for Transforming Lives (Fort Worth, Texas)
  3. Systematically Removing Barriers to Enrollment and Attendance in Early Childhood Development Programs
    • Horizons for Children (Boston, Massachusetts)

Read the Case Studies