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Homeless Families | Spokane, WA
Homeless Families

  • A new study shows the number of homeless students in Spokane County has risen to almost 3,000, which is 33% higher than the state average.  Researchers at Eastern Washington University said Spokane has experienced a 60 percent growth in student homelessness in the last five years. Of the nearly 3,000 homeless children in Spokane County schools, 76% of them are doubling up with family and friends due to evictions and other financial issues.  When people think about homelessness, they think about people sleeping under bridges or holding signs, but homeless students are much less visible.   ("Study: Almost 3,000 students grades K-12 in Spokane County are homeless," by Raishad Hardnett, KREM.com, October 15, 2015 

  • Families with children are the fastest growing segment of the homeless population, now accounting for up to 40%.
  • The saddest statistic is that l out of 4 homeless persons is a child.   (Family Promise of Spokane)

  • "One in 27 students in Spokane County is homeless."  There are 3,000 homeless students in Spokane, a 60% increase in over the last 5 years, according to Priority Spokane.  This percentage is 33% higher than the State average.  As a result, Governor Jay Inslee signed House Bill 1682 in April 2016 which will create grant programs to add liaisons for the homeless in our schools, rental assistance for their families, and transportation help, and more. Homeless students have an increase of behavior problems and depression.    (KREM-TV, May 2, 2016) 

  • In 2013, HUD estimates that on a single night in January, 610,042 people were homeless in the United States. Nearly 2/3 were living in emergency shelters or transitional housing; and more than 1/3 were living in unsheltered locations such as under bridges, in cars, or in abandoned buildings. 

    The age of Homeless Population in 2013: 
    67% of all homeless people were 25 year or older;
    10% were 18 to 24 years old;
    23% were homeless children under the age of 18
    30% of sheltered homeless people were children
    80% of unsheltered homeless people were over the age of 25
    less than 10% of the unsheltered population was under 18 

    (Source:  National Estimates, Homelessness in the U.S., The 2013 Annual Homeless Assessment Report (AHAR) to Congress, pg 6)

What You Can Do
  • Families with children can contact their children's school to receive help through their homeless programs.  Spokane Public Schools, as well as other school districts, has a HEART program (Homeless Education & Resource Team).  Schools can help arrange transportation for children to get to and from school, as well as provide connections to other resources

  • Childcare.  SNAP has a Homeless Childcare Program to help homeless families with free childcare for up to 90 days as they seek permanent housing, employment, and/or attend appointments. Please call (509) 624-4282 for an appointment. This service is located at the SNAP Homeless Services office. 
Local Organizations
Additional Resources

If you need assistance with finding shelter, and are located in City of Spokane, please call Spokane's Homeless Family Coordinated Assessment, before calling the homeless shelters.  The Assessment team will assess your situation, and direct you to the agencies which serve your particular needs.
Homeless Family Coordinated Assessment 
(a program of Catholic Charities)
Family Resource Center Bldg.
19 W. Pacific
(Myrtle Woldson Institute building)
Spokane, WA  99201
(509) 325-5005 (answered 24/7)
Walk-in Hours:  Monday - Thursday from 12:30 pm to 5 pm.

If you need assistance with finding shelter, and are located in Spokane County and outside of the City of Spokane please contact:
Spokane County Community Services Housing, and Community Development Department
(an assessment for homelessness and housing)
(866) 904-9060
Learn if you are eligible for an application for County-administered programs, connect to  City administered programs, access publicly and privately funded emergency shelters info, and link to Washington Connections website to apply other governmental benefits.

DSHS Home and Community Services

Food, Cash, Medical assistance
Dept. of Social and Health Services - Washington State
(509) 323-9400
(509) 227-2200   North Office
(509) 227-2500   Central Office, 1313 N. Maple Street
(509) 227-2400   Southwest Office
(509) 227-2700   Valley Office, 8517 E. Trent Ave, Ste 202

Families with Children up to age 18
Open Doors 

(Family Promise of Spokane)
631 S. Richard Allen Court
Spokane, WA
(south Perry district)
Day Shelter ONLY for any homeless family with children, up to age 18. 
As of June 5, 2017, they will offer 24/7 Emergency Shelter.  Prior to that date, they are only open 7:30 am - 7:30 pm.  Homeless families are taken to the Salvation Army to sleep from 7:30 pm to 7:30 am. 

HEART (Homeless Education and Resource Team) is a program in place in various Spokane school districts, which is designed to address and support the educational needs of students who find themselves in temporary or transitional housing during the school year.
Homeless Education and Resource Team (HEART)
Spokane Valley & Spokane

Spokane Public Schools