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Child Welfare. 2006 Mar-Apr;85(2):361-84.

Putting the pieces together for queer youth: a model of integrated assessment of need and program planning.


Needs assessments require staff with the necessary expertise to design the study, collect the data, analyze the data, and present results. They require money, time, and persistence, because the people one wishes to assess often are difficult to access. This article argues for the centrality of a well-done needs assessment when developing services for LGBTQ youth. Needs assessment methodology and adjunctive uses of the needs assessment data also are discussed. The authors present a needs assessment of LGBTQ youth living in out-of-home care in San Diego, California, as an example of the purpose, practicality, and power of a comprehensive needs assessment. The needs assessment identified several issues, as well as additional data supporting the project's necessity. The data also identified the most significant obstacles youth face in accessing housing and supportive services. Through the data collection process, non-LGBT housing providers better understood their need for additional training, and housing and city leadership communities obtained and spread knowledge of the project.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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