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Am J Orthopsychiatry. 2009 Jul;79(3):292-8. doi: 10.1037/a0017245.

Parenting and homelessness: overview and introduction to the Special Section.

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  • 1Center for Social Innovation, Newton Centre, Massachusetts, USA.


This overview of parenting and homelessness includes the characteristics and needs of families who are homeless, with a focus on the unique challenges faced by mothers, fathers, and children. In addition, the authors discuss how homeless families are narrowly defined based on the family members who present at shelters and other service programs. In order to fully support parents and their children as they exit homelessness, homeless service programs should consider the broader context of the nontraditional family system and support networks. The overview also includes common challenges to parenting while homeless, a summary of the articles in the Special Section, and recommendations for research, practice, and policy.

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