Arts Programming for Youth Experiencing Homelessness

This factsheet was created by the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness

This factsheet was developed by Dr. Kaitlin Schwan, Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness.

The factsheet outlines five key benefits of art-making for youth who are homeless:

  1. Stress reduction & relaxation
  2. Mental health recovery
  3. Healing trauma
  4. Self-expression and self-discovery
  5. Self-confidence

The factsheet includes ten tips for creating and impactful arts program and ten ways that the arts can be used to address the causes and effects of youth homelessness:

  1. Advocacy
  2. Healing and recovery from trauma
  3. Public education
  4. Building social supports and connections
  5. Skill-building for the new economy
  6. Community integration
  7. Cultural connection for Indigenous youth
  8. Supports for youth transitioning from homelessness
  9. Research mobilization
  10. Career development

The factsheet was first published on the Homeless Hub Blog.


Can Art Make a Difference? Mobilizing the Arts to Prevent and End Youth Homelessness



Schwan, K. (2017). Arts Programming for Youth Experiencing Homelessness. Toronto, ON: Canadian Observatory on Homelessness. Retrieved from:

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