Making the Shift is delighted to announce that five new research projects have been funded that bolster the evidence base of youth homelessness prevention in Canada and align with the five intersecting themes of the MtS research agenda.

Congratulations to this cohort of successful applicants. Additional research investments will be announced in the coming months.

1) Decolonizing Transitions from Care for Indigenous Youth

Cynthia Puddu, MacEwan University
Edmonton, Alberta

Through following the experience of youth entering an Indigenous housing initiative that provides support with daily living, access to Elders, and other cultural supports, this research seeks to understand how an Indigenous-led program can reduce homelessness by addressing their overall spiritual, emotional, and physical well-being.

The project will identify and assess housing models designed to address the needs of Indigenous youth transitioning out of care in Canada; co-create a decolonized approach to youth housing programming and youth research; and create a research network around preventing Urban Indigenous Youth Homelessness.

2) Looking South (and Slightly North-East) for School-based Prevention Ideas

Jacqueline Kennelly, Carleton University
Ottawa, Ontario

This project will systematically investigate and synthesize school-based prevention efforts in Australia, Wales, and the U.S., as well as implementing and evaluating a youth created, school-based prevention-focused workshop for teachers and education students in Canada.

The project aims to provide concrete strategies to transform the Canadian educational policy landscape towards effectively integrating school-based prevention of youth homelessness.

3) Using Administrative Data to Understand and Provide Effective Response to Youth Homelessness

Ron Kneebone, University of Calgary
Calgary, Alberta

This project relies on a very large administrative datasets (Statistics Canada and Calgary Police Services) to identify the size and nature of the problem of youth homelessness. Specifically, the project looks at the patterns and intensity of emergency shelter use by youth, identifying which youth are most likely to succeed in Housing First programs, and determining the differential impacts of program interventions on Indigenous youth.

The project provides a unique opportunity to accurately measure details of how government policy and institutional program design, as well as family financial conditions, play a role in shaping and ending youth homelessness.

4) Making the Prevention Shift in Québec: Prévention Itinérance Jeunesse (PIJ)

Sue-Ann MacDonald, University of Montreal
Montreal, Quebec

The project aims to synthesize what is currently known about pathways leading to youth homelessness in Québec; apprehend promising early intervention and prevention practices; mobilize local knowledge (practice, policy, theory) on the prevention of youth homelessness; and identify research, practice and policy priorities, with the overall goal of developing a provincial prevention framework.

The project will produce a made-in-Québec prevention framework and action plan that will be carried forward by collaborators and youth.

5) EQUIP Housing: Enacting Culturally Safe Housing Stability for Indigenous Youth Finding Home

Abe Oudshoorn, Western University
London, Ontario

This project will explore the value of the EQUIP model in preventing and ending Indigenous youth homelessness. By engaging Indigenous research and participatory implementation methods, it will test an evidence-informed model of equity- oriented approaches in order to prevent homelessness and support sustained exits to housing.

This project adapts an equity-oriented model from primary health care to homelessness prevention and response in order to transform service delivery and remove barriers for Indigenous youth.