A Grand Challenge for Transforming Practice & Policy

Families in Society: The Journal of Contemporary Social Services
Vol. 97, No. 3 (July-September 2016)

Co-Editors: Sondra J. Fogel & Heather Larkin

This is an expanded special issue on ending homelessness through understanding and mitigating risk for individuals and families, identifying service gaps and prevention prospects, and pursuing community-driven solutions.

Families in Society is responding to two national initiatives to bridge research and practice on ending homelessness and strengthening the social fabric for individuals, families, and communities. The special issue is the first collection by a journal created specifically in response to the Grand Challenges for Social Work, a groundbreaking initiative led by the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare to champion social progress powered by science. In addition, the National Homelessness Social Work Initiative, led by the National Center for Excellence in Homeless Services, is working to empower the social work profession to lead this challenge.Both practice wisdom and research are key to responding to the challenges of people who are marginally housed and homeless. This special issue strengthens the knowledge base with rigor and relevance, thus helping to transform research related to child welfare, mental health, disabilities and health, substance misuse, and aging—all key service areas in which participants’ housing instability affects successful outcomes. Articles include an understanding of service needs across the lifespan, as well as effective practice, program, and policy interventions.