Task Force Plan Focuses on At-Risk Children and Youth
Resources and Report
The Children and Youth Project Team of the Homelessness Task Force of Greater Kansas City, with assistance from the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC), has developed an investment plan as a first step in articulating the needs of at-risk children and youth in Greater Kansas City and setting priorities for improvement, as well as identifying resource opportunities. The plan outlines five community goals, documents the scale of the need in the nine-county Kansas City region and assesses current capacity and strategies for addressing gaps in services.
The investment plan describes the extent of the challenges faced by children, youth and their families in the nine-county Kansas City region:
- 134,570 children — 25 percent of the total population under age 19 — were enrolled in free/reduced school lunch programs in 2011, an indicator of child poverty;
- 8,84 students were homeless and 3,662 youth were in foster care during the 2012-2013 school year;
- 7,737 youth needed intensive substance abuse services in 2012;
- 1,998 youth ages 14 and under, and 3,724 youth ages 15-24 were hospitalized with mental health disorders in 2011.
The report includes survey data from providers that describes current capacity across the region.
The REACH Foundation and the Healthcare Foundation of Greater Kansas City provided financial support for the study and investment plan.