Posted on October 7, 2014. Filed under: Nonfiction | Tags: , , |

Yesterday’s events for World Habitat Day at Oakton and around the world were designed to raise awareness about the need for adequate shelter for people who live homeless. For those who are seeking more information about homelessness, check out some of these books available at Oakton’s Library.

book cover for A Recipe for HopeA Recipe for Hope: Stories of Transformation by People Struggling with Homelessness
by Karen M. Skalitzky

“The popular misconception that most homeless are uneducated, mentally ill or addicted to drugs is challenged by true, diverse stories of struggle and defeat, victory and love. Collected from among the men and women of Inspiration Corporation, an organization dedicated to helping the homeless back to self-sufficiency while restoring their dignity and self respect, these first person accounts show how homelessness can affect and afflict everyone, and they reveal the complex humanity behind this often “faceless” problem”  (Descriptive content provided by Syndetics).

confronting homelessnessConfronting Homelessness: Poverty, Politics, and the Failure of Social Policy
by David Wagner with Jennifer Barton Gilman

“Whose fault is homelessness? Thirty years ago the problem exploded as a national crisis, drawing the attention of activists, the media, and policymakers at all levels, yet the homeless population endures to this day, and arguably has grown. In this book the author offers a major reconsideration of homelessness in the U.S., casting a critical eye on how we as a society respond to crises of inequality and stratification.

Incorporating local studies into a national narrative, he probes how homelessness shifted from being the subject of a politically charged controversy over poverty and social class to posing a functional question of social service delivery. At the heart of his analysis is insight into why we accept highly symbolic policies that dampen public outrage, but fail to address the fundamental structural problems that would allow real change” (Descriptive content provided by Syndetics).

book cover for Breaking NightBreaking Night: A Memoir of Forgiveness, Survival, and My Journey from Homeless to Harvard
by Liz Murray

Breaking night: (Urban slang) staying up through the night, until the sun rises

Breaking Night is the stunning memoir of a young woman who at age fifteen was living on the streets, and who eventually made it into Harvard.

Liz Murray was born to loving but drug-addicted parents in the Bronx. In school she was taunted for her dirty clothing and lice-infested hair, eventually skipping so many classes that she was put into a girls’ home. At age fifteen, Liz found herself on the streets when her family finally unraveled. She learned to scrape by, foraging for food and riding subways all night to have a warm place to sleep.

When Liz’s mother died of AIDS, she decided to take control of her own destiny and go back to high school, often completing her assignments in the hallways and subway stations where she slept. Liz squeezed four years of high school into two, while homeless; won a New York Times scholarship; and made it into the Ivy League. Breaking Night is an unforgettable and beautifully written story of one young woman’s indomitable spirit to survive and prevail, against all odds” (Descriptive content provided by Syndetics).

book cover for Homelessness Comes to SchoolHomelessness Comes to School
by Joseph Murphy

“School-aged children in homeless families and independent homeless youth represent the fastest-growing population of homeless individuals in the United States. This volume brings the issue to light with substantial and far-reaching research that describes the plight of these children, the legal framework surrounding the issue, and educators’ roles in teaching homeless children. Homelessness Comes to School also outlines effective intervention programs and provides specific guidelines for teaching homeless students.

Topics covered include:
– A history of homelessness, including its demographic patterns, causes, and impact on society
– The various programs schools have implemented to address homeless children’s needs
– How schools, parents, and external community agencies can work together to educate homeless students

Evaluating the scope of the problem and developing interventions for these students at risk must be a priority for service providers and policy makers. This resource will give all involved parties a well-grounded understanding of homelessness and guidelines for working together toward a solution” (Descriptive content provided by Syndetics).

book cover for How To House the HomelessHow to House the Homeless
edited by Ingrid Gould Ellen and Brendan O’Flaherty

“Homelessness is one of the most troubling and persistent social problems in the United States, yet experts can neither agree on its root causes nor on how to eradicate it. Is homelessness the result of individual life conditions, such as poverty, addiction, or mental illness, or is there simply not enough affordable housing? And which services are the most successful?

In How to House the Homeless, editors Ingrid Gould Ellen and Brendan O’Flaherty propose that the answers entail rethinking how housing markets operate and developing more efficient interventions in existing service programs. The book critically reassesses where we are now, analyzes the most promising policies and programs going forward, and offers a new agenda for future research” (Descriptive content provided by Syndetics).

-posted by Gretchen Schneider


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