Help for Alaska's homeless is the topic under discussion this week in Anchorage. Hundreds of shelter directors and community leaders are participating in a 3 day conference on the issue.
At the Covenant House Alaska directors say the issue for many homeless is a reoccurring one and that's what they aim to stop.
Being homeless is an issue a person can face at any age.
"Right now our econonmy is pretty tough and families are having to make tough decisions," said Covenant House Alaska associate executive director Carlette Mack, "and some youth because of their age, at the age of 18, are asked to leave their home."
For them, the doors are open at Covenant House Alaska. A facility providing shelter and services for homeless youths ages 13-21.
The goal is to help these young people get the skills that they need to become successful adults so they won't end up homeless again in a few years.
"That means continuing their education getting a job identifying those challenges that have prevented them from being successful and addressing them right now," said Mack.
Mack says she's seen the number of homeless young people increase year by year, last year they served over 5,000. That's why they're expanding to a new location this upcoming fall.... With 20 additional beds for overnight guests and more services.
At the Alaska Coalition on Housing and Homelessness conference Mack said she was able to share and learn from with other organizations.
"I think the coalition is bringing us all together to weld those strategies. So we can also make sure these people are getting that they need to succeed," said Mack.
Contact Mallory Peebles