We are thrilled to announce that our CEO, Sherilyn Adams, and CSO, Ilsa Lund, co-authored a groundbreaking article recently published in the prestigious Frontiers in Public Health. The article, “Keeping Young Researchers Out of Harm’s Way: Conducting Youth Participatory Action Research with Young People Experiencing Homelessness,” explores innovative research methodologies that involve youth experiencing homelessness (YEH) as active participants. This approach ensures that their voices and experiences directly shape the research outcomes, highlighting the importance of Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR).

The study addresses the unique challenges faced by YEH. Conducted in collaboration with researchers from various esteemed academic institutions, it emphasizes the need for consistent access to food, safety measures during fieldwork, and strategies to overcome structural barriers to professional engagement. These insights offer valuable perspectives for enhancing support for YEH.

Using a YPAR approach, the study engaged youth as co-researchers who conducted interviews and collected data on their experiences with homelessness, safety, and accessing resources. Five major themes emerged: food insecurity, environmental violence, structural barriers to employment, professional development challenges, and the benefits of participation. The findings provide practical recommendations for creating trauma-responsive, flexible, and supportive research environments.

We are immensely proud of the impactful work led by our executive team. We extend our gratitude to fellow authors G. Allen Ratliff, Darren Cosgrove, Jessica O. Yang, Richard Sarabia, Taylor L. Harvey, Nathan Jeffcoat, Marguerita Lightfoot, and Colette L. Auerswald for their invaluable contributions. Their dedication to advancing public health research through inclusive and empowering methodologies is inspiring. This research is a vital part of our mission to move beyond tokenism and towards sustainable youth engagement in public health programs and interventions.

Click here to read the full article and learn more about how YPAR can make a difference in the lives of young people experiencing homelessness.