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Related Topic: Human Services

Fellow Participants

  • Sen. Barbara Blackmon, Mississippi
  • Rep. Scott Nishimoto, Hawaii
  • Rep. Keith Brooks, Arkansas
  • Sen. T’wina Nobles, Washington
  • Rep. Lisa Callan, Washington
  • Sen. Julie Rosen, Minnesota
  • Rep. Dale Devon, Indiana
  • Rep. Jamie Scott, Arkansas
  • Sen. Adam Ebbin, Virginia
  • Rep. Anne Stava-Murray, Illinois
  • Rep. Susan Estes, Kansas
  • Rep. Geran Tarr, Alaska
  • Rep. Katrina Jackson, Louisiana
  • Rep. Liz Thomson, New Mexico
  • Rep. Abby Major, Pennsylvania
  • Rep. Andrea Valderrama, Oregon
  • Rep. Victoria Morales, Maine
  • Rep. DeAnn Vaught, Arkansas
  • Rep. Napoleon Nelson, Pennsylvania
  • Sen. Jeff Yarbro, Tennessee

Legislative Staff Participants

  • Shawna Richards, United States Virgin Islands
  • Kien Truong, Oregon
  • Johanna Wakelin, Massachusetts

Dates: June 27-29, 2022

Meeting Location: Embassy Suites, Seattle | 255 South King Street Seattle 98104

This meeting will set the stage for the inaugural cohort of NCSL’s Youth Homelessness Fellows. Throughout the fellowship, participants will work toward achieving the following goals in a peer-learning setting with facilitated small-group learning opportunities. Goals include:

  • Gain knowledge about new research and policy options.
  • Exchange ideas and solutions related to youth and young adult homelessness.
  • Connect with other legislative leaders.
  • Gain practical information for use in their state.
  • Develop an youth homelessness action plan.
  • Connect with leading researchers and policy experts.

Resources:

Day 1 | Monday, June 27

3:30 p.m.

Registration Opens

4-5 p.m.

Program Introduction: Youth Homelessness Fellows Cohort #1

Meet Youth Homelessness Fellows, faculty and NCSL staff, and prepare for the experience of working together to achieve the goals of the program.

Facilitators: Heather Hanna, NCSL; Cameron Rifkin, NCSL; Walker Stevens, NCSL; Heather Wilson, NCSL

5-5:45 p.m.

Welcome & Networking Reception

6-7:30 p.m.

Dinner and Keynote Address

Enjoy dinner with Child Welfare Fellows, Early Childhood Fellows and Youth Homelessness Fellows. William Bell will set the state for all three fellows programs by drawing on his more than 40 years of experience leading efforts to improve the well-being of our nation's children and families. 

Moderators: Kate Blackman, NCSL and Wade Fickler, NCSL

Speaker: William Bell, Ph.D., president and CEO, Casey Family Programs

Day 2 | Monday, June 28

8-9 a.m.

Breakfast and Networking

9-10:30 a.m.

Joint Opening Plenary: Brain Science and the Importance of Building a Strong Foundation

This plenary session will provide an overview of brain development, examining neuroscience research and considering the impact of experiences and the neurobiology of trauma.

Speakers: Melanie Berry, Psy.D., senior specialist, Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University; Greta Massetti, Ph.D., branch chief, Field Epidemiology and Prevention Branch at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Presentation Slides

10:30-10:45 a.m.

Break and Room Change

10:45-12:30 p.m.

An Introduction to Youth Homelessness

Learn and engage with faculty as they define youth homelessness, vulnerable populations and demographics, root causes and consequences, toxic stress and prevention factors. We will dive into national and state data while examining the causes and outcomes of youth homelessness.

Faculty: Kim Justice, executive director, Office of Homeless Youth Prevention and Protection, Washington State Department of Commerce; Kahran LaTourette, youth project coordinator, Innovations HTC; Matthew Morton, research fellow, Chapin Hall; Katie Meyer Scott, senior youth attorney, National Homelessness Law Center

Presentation Slides 

12:30-1:45 p.m.

Lunch, Networking and Wellness Walk

1:45-2:30 p.m.

Youth Homelessness Policy Landscape and Trends

Explore how the federal landscape impacts states. What are the state policy trends related to youth experiencing homelessness?

Faculty: Patricia Julianelle, senior strategist for program advancement & legal affairs, SchoolHouse Connection; Rodd Monts, director of state policy, SchoolHouse Connection; Katie Meyer Scott, senior youth attorney, National Homelessness Law Center

Presentation Slides

2:30-4 p.m.

Learning Lab: Exploring Policy Opportunities and Challenges

Building upon the previous session, this interactive learning lab is an opportunity to engage in discussion with faculty and NCSL staff on key topics in youth homelessness.

Faculty: Patricia Julianelle, senior strategist for program advancement & legal affairs, SchoolHouse Connection; Kim Justice, executive director, Office of Homeless Youth Prevention and Protection, Washington State Department of Commerce; Kahran LaTourette, youth project coordinator, Innovations HTC; Rodd Monts, director of state policy, SchoolHouse Connection; Katie Meyer Scott, senior youth attorney, National Homelessness Law Center; Liz Trautman, director of public policy & advocacy, Mockingbird Society

4-4:15 p.m.

Break

4:15-5 p.m.

Where Do We From Here?

Engage in discussion and reflection with colleagues on new learnings, policy considerations and questions to be answered.

Facilitators: Heather Hanna, NCSL; Cameron Rifkin, NCSL; Walker Stevens, NCSL; Heather Wilson, NCSL

6 p.m.

Dinner on Your Own

Venture out on your own or with others to enjoy Seattle’s food scene.

Day 3 | Monday, June 29

7:30-8:30 a.m.

Breakfast and Networking

8:30-9 a.m.

Travel to Mockingbird Society

9 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

Site Visit at Mockingbird Society

Tour the Mockingbird Society and learn about their work in Washington to support youth experiencing homelessness. During this site visit, we will hear from two panels 1) lived expertise in the policymaking process and 2) Washington’s cross-system and collaborative efforts.

1:30-2 p.m.

Return to Embassy Suites

2 p.m.

Adjourn

Dates: September 12 - September 14

Meeting Location: Embassy Suites by Hilton Denver Downtown Convention Center | 1420 Stout Street, Denver, Colorado, 80202

Tag social media posts with @NCSLorg and use hashtag #NCSLFellows.

Resources:

Day 1 | Monday, September 12

3 p.m.

Registration Opens

5:30-7:30 p.m.

Networking Reception

Day 2 | Tuesday, September 13

7:30-8:30 a.m.

Breakfast and Networking

8:30-9:45 a.m.

Joint Opening Plenary: Putting Money to Work for Children and Families

Learn from Elizabeth Gaines, a nationally recognized expert in public financing, how to optimize funding to better meet the needs of young children and youth. Gaines is the founder and chief executive officer of Children’s Funding Project, a nonprofit social impact organization that helps communities and states consider opportunities for children and youth through strategic public financing.

Moderator: Wade Fickler, NCSL and Tahra Johnson, NCSL

Speaker: Elizabeth Gaines, founder and CEO, Children’s Funding Project

Presentation Slides

9:45- 10 a.m.

Break and Room Change

10-10:15 a.m.

Reconnect with Youth Homelessness Fellows

Reengage with fellows and preview what’s in store throughout the meeting.

Facilitators: Heather Hanna, NCSL; Heather Wilson, NCSL; Walker Stevens, NCSL

10:15-11:15 a.m.

Housing, Employment and Economic Supports to Prevent Youth Homelessness

Housing, employment and economic support services can help reduce and prevent youth from experiencing homelessness. This session will provide an overview of supportive housing services and key takeaways for youth and young adults experiencing homelessness. Learn about national and state trends to help youth move toward housing security.

Moderator: Heather Hanna, NCSL

Speaker: Annie Bacci, director, Corporation for Supportive Housing

Presentation Slides

Resources

11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

Local and State Collaboration to Prevent Youth Homelessness

In Seattle, fellows learned about Washington’s efforts to prevent youth homelessness. In this session, hear how two states are collaborating to align systems, funding, housing solutions and services for youth experiencing homelessness.

Moderator: Heather Wilson, NCSL

Panelists: Adrienne Bush, executive director, Housing and Homelessness Coalition of Kentucky and Brittany Wade, homeless program specialist, Office of Homeless Youth Services.

Resources

12:15-1:15 p.m.

Lunch and Networking

Lunch will be provided by NCSL. Fellows and faculty are invited engage in conversation.

1:15-2:15 p.m.

Juvenile Justice and Youth Homelessness: What the Connection?

Approximately one million young people have contact with youth courts, probation and incarceration systems. In this session, learn how a lack of shelter and basic needs and abuse or family conflict can contribute to juvenile justice system-involved youth experiencing homelessness.

Moderator: Heather Hanna, NCSL

Speaker: Naomi Smoot-Evans, executive director, Coalition for Juvenile Justice

Presentation Slides

Resources

2:15-2:30 p.m.

Break and Room Change

2:30-3:30 p.m.

Meeting the Complex Needs of Youth Exiting Foster Care

In this joint session with the child welfare fellows, participants will learn from the data collected by Think of Us and hear what youth and young adults who have experienced the foster care system need to safely and securely transition into adulthood and avoid homelessness. This session will include state policy examples and options for policymakers to consider.

Moderator: Heather Wilson, NCSL

Speaker: Taylor Vitello, director of proximate policy, Think of Us

Presentation Slides

Resources

3:30-3:45 p.m.

Break and Room Change

3:45-5:00 p.m.

Legislative Action Planning – Part 1

In this first action planning session, fellows will explore what the future could look like and the tools needed to get there.

Facilitators: Heather Hanna, NCSL; Heather Wilson, NCSL; Walker Stevens, NCSL

6:00 p.m.

Dinner on Your Own

Venture out on your own or with others to enjoy Denver’s food scene.
Day 3 | Wednesday, September 14

7:00-8:30 a.m.

Breakfast and Networking

Breakfast is provided by the hotel and is available in the restaurant.

8:30-9:30 a.m.

Strategies to Prevent Human Trafficking and Youth Homelessness

Youth and young adults experiencing homelessness are at greater risk of becoming victims of sex or labor trafficking. In this session learn about the prevalence of human trafficking among youth and young adults experiencing homelessness, risk factors and potential policy solutions.

Moderator: Heather Wilson, NCSL

Speaker: Darla Bardine, executive director, National Network for Youth

Presentation Slides

Resources

9:30-9:45 a.m.

Hotel Check Out

9:45-10:45 a.m.

Barriers and Opportunities: Access to Services for Youth Experiencing Homelessness

Many youth experiencing homelessness face significant barriers to accessing legal, health and financial services. Learn about policy opportunities to reduce and prevent these barriers.

Moderator: Walker Stevens, NCSL

Panelists: Kelly Russo, director, Commission on Homelessness and Poverty, American Bar Association and Patricia Julianelle, senior policy strategist for Program Advancement and Legal Affairs, School House Connection

Resources

10:45 a.m.-12 p.m.

Legislative Action Planning – Part 2

Fellows will leave this session with a personal action plan to prevent youth in their state from experiencing homelessness.

Facilitators: Heather Hanna, NCSL; Heather Wilson, NCSL; Walker Stevens, NCSL

12-12:15 p.m.

Break

12:15-1:40 p.m.

Joint Lunch and Closing Plenary: Up and Down the Prevention Continuum

Engage with fellows across the three programs over a networking lunch. Then hear from Melissa Merrick, CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. Merrick will share her organization’s vision and the important role you as lawmakers and NCSL policy fellows can play. We will consider the continuum of prevention strategies and opportunities for parents and other caregivers to create better outcomes for their children.

Moderators: Kate Blackman and Wade Fickler, NCSL

Speaker: Melissa Merrick, Ph.D., president and CEO, Prevent Child Abuse America

Presentation Slides

1:40-2:00 p.m.

Closing Ceremony: You’re Awesome, but Now What?

Congratulations! Enjoy final closing remarks by NCSL’s CEO as you complete your time as a Youth Homelessness Fellow. NCSL is your organization, and we’re here to support you as you return home with new subject-matter knowledge and ideas about how to better meet the needs of your constituents.

Moderators: Kate Blackman, NCSL and Wade Fickler, NCSL

Speaker: Tim Storey, CEO, NCSL

2 p.m.

Adjourn

Webinar 1: Thursday, July 21 | 2 p.m. ET

Topic: Youth Homelessness and Intersections with Systems of Care

Webinar 2: Thursday, August 18 | 2 p.m. ET

Topic: Protective Factors and their role in Child Welfare, Early Childhood and Youth Homelessness

Related Resources

Child Welfare Fellows Program

NCSL Child Welfare Fellows program is designed to support legislators and legislative staff who are experienced or emerging leaders in child welfare policy. Fellows will focus on important federal legislation, and find ways they can improve their state's child welfare program.
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