Education for Children and Youth Experiencing Homelessness (ECYEH)

Freedom is meaningless if people cannot put food in their stomachs, if they can have no shelter, if illiteracy and disease continue to dog them. – Nelson Mandela

In 1987, Congress passed the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act, (subsequently renamed the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act) to aid homeless persons. The Act defines the term “homeless children and youths” as individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. On December 10, 2015, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was enacted, amending McKinney-Vento.

If your family is in a temporary or inadequate living situation due to a loss of housing, your child might be eligible for certain educational rights and services. The federal mandate ensures that homeless children and youth have access to the same free and appropriate public education as other children. Children who are homeless may qualify for assistance with school lunch, school supplies, tutoring, and transportation so that they can remain in their school of origin.

If you believe your scholar may qualify for this service, please contact:
Ftazia Leininger, MSW, LCSW
Director of Family First Center
412.361.1008 x231
School Resource:

Other Resources:

Allegheny County Homeless Services
Allegheny County offers a wide array of housing options and services for people experiencing or at risk of homelessness, including: emergency shelter, permanent housing and supportive services; street outreach, engagement and case management; and prevention strategies.

Big Burgh
A quick and easy resource to finds free services that can help the homeless and those at risk of being homeless in the City of Pittsburgh. Mobile optimized!
Several different non-profit agencies work with the Bureau of Homeless Services to prevent and reverse homelessness in Allegheny County. They offer a number of potential solutions to tenants and anyone that is currently homeless in the county or the city of Pittsburgh.

PA 2-1-1 Southwest
Dial 2-1-1 as an easy-to-remember telephone number or search their database as a web resource. Find health and human services for everyday needs and crisis situations.


HUD Housing Counseling Referral Service: 1-800-569-4287
HUD sponsors approved housing counseling agencies that provide housing counseling services to citizens for free. Call 1-800-569-4287 to find a counselor that serves your neighborhood.

Discrimination Hotline: 1-800-669-9777
Call this helpline for information on filing a complaint about housing discrimination. HUD handles complaints in the areas of housing discrimination, bad landlords in federal housing, manufactured housing, land sales, deceptive contractors, and fraud, waste, or abuse in HUD programs.

National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
This hotline provides crisis intervention, information about domestic violence and referrals to local service providers to victims of domestic violence and those calling on their behalf.

National Runaway Safeline: 1-800-786-2929
The National Runaway Switchboard (NRS) helpline gives help and hope to youth and their families by providing non-judgmental, confidential crisis intervention and local and national referrals 24 hours a day.

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