Richland Library Hosts Forum on Youth Homelessness
Richland Library will host a community discussion about the importance of helping Columbia's homeless youth find stability from 3 – 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, November 17 in the Bostick Auditorium of the Main Library, located at 1431 Assembly Street in downtown Columbia.
“There's been a lot of recent attention on homelessness in Columbia, and concerns about the effects of homelessness on our downtown economy,” said Richland Library Programs and Partnerships Librarian Sarah Gough. “But children in homeless families and especially unaccompanied youth trying to make it on their own are falling through the cracks.”
Moderated by WIS TV’s Judi Gatson, panelists for the forum include Deborah Boone, Richland School District 1 homeless education liaison; Anita Floyd, chair of the South Carolina Coalition for the Homeless; and Angela Culbreath, Family Services director of the Columbia Family Shelter.
National bestselling author Janna McMahan will also be on hand to give insight on how teen homelessness inspired her to write her newest novel, Anonymity.
In 2010, Richland County School District One identified 1,093 homeless students attending their schools and the South Carolina Department of Education identified 10,820 homeless students in schools across the state. Based on test scores, the National Center on Family Homelessness estimates that the high school graduation rate for homeless children in South Carolina is less than 25%.
A follow up discussion is scheduled for Sunday, March 23 at the Main Library. For more information about homelessness in Richland County and the library’s work to advance our community, visit RichlandLibrary.com.