Skip Navigation

Image of the Baltimore County Historic Courthouse

Baltimore County News

Stay informed of what's happening in Baltimore County.
Keyword: homelessness

Youth Reach Maryland is Part of Statewide Effort to Reduce Homelessness

Baltimore County is seeking to contact and survey young people under age 25 who are struggling with homelessness or unstable housing. For the next two weeks, County Department of Planning staff and their non-profit partners will be taking extra steps to locate youth with unstable housing situations in order to estimate the number of people who make up this vulnerable population and gain a deeper knowledge of the challenges they face.  

The County is participating in a statewide effort, known as Youth Reach Maryland, to contact and survey young people who are homeless or struggling with serious housing issues. This effort has engaged regional partners and seeks to strengthen knowledge of and services to youth under age 25 who are not living with a parent or guardian and face an unstable housing situation that may be viewed as homelessness.   

The County's effort to contact this constituency begins Monday, March 12, and continues through Sunday, March 25. The County Department of Planning and the non-profits Prologue, Inc. and Baltimore County Communities for the Homeless (BCCH) are leading the county effort, working closely with service providers and institutions, including soup kitchens, homeless shelters, libraries, schools, colleges and universities. The County and its partners have assembled a network of people, including youth ambassadors, who will visit key locations, reach out and, hopefully, survey the select youth population over the two-week period.

Advocates for the homeless believe that independent youth and young adults under age 25 who are struggling with housing are often a hidden population that goes uncounted. Youth Reach Maryland seeks to improve the count and deepen knowledge of a unique, challenging constituency. 

Maryland's effort to improve outreach to homeless youth began in 2013, when the legislature made it a priority to improve the frequency and accuracy of counting the state's unaccompanied homeless youth. It established the Task Force to Study Housing and Supportive Services for Unaccompanied Homeless Youth, which recommended a Youth and Young Adult Count of Unaccompanied Homeless. This later became the initiative known as Youth REACH (Reach out, Engage, Assist, & Count to end Homelessness) MD. The state effort is now led by the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development and coordinated by the University of Maryland School of Social Work.

Those interested in learning more about Baltimore County's Youth Reach effort are encouraged to contact Terri Kingeter at or visit the following web links:

 By Bryan Dunn, Department of Economic & Workforce Development

Homelessness can start with losing a job or learning that a family member has a serious illness, then finding that the cost and complexity of everyday life is snowballing out of control.

Meet Jennifer. We’re not using her real name to protect her privacy.  

Jennifer was let go from her job and fell into homelessness. She knows what working hard is all about. She has extensive food service experience, including staff supervision. But it was tough to know how to compete in today’s market. Living in a shelter in Reisterstown, Jennifer felt locked out from the world of work.  

Jennifer was a resident of Sarah's Hope at the Hannah More Emergency Shelter when she met staff from Saint Vincent de Paul and Anthony Smith from Baltimore County’s American Job Center. Working together, they helped unlock Jennifer’s career.   

As part of the County’s strategy to prevent and reduce homelessness, Job Center staff regularly take a mobile career unit to the county’s three largest homeless shelters, bringing services directly to people who need help getting back into the workforce. 

When Baltimore County’s mobile career services came to Sarah's Hope, Jennifer was ready to get to work. Anthony helped Jennifer develop her résumé and post her profile on the Maryland Workforce Exchange, a statewide database of job opportunities. Anthony coached her on how to search and apply for food services positions that matched her experience and skills. Staff at the Liberty Job Center in Randallstown also pitched in with services.  

The hard work payed off. Jennifer was offered a position at Johns Hopkins Hospital. 

Jennifer restarted her career and Baltimore County is beaming with pride to be a small part of her success. 

There’s nothing like hearing the words “You’re hired, Jennifer.” 

Do you or someone you know need a job? 

Baltimore County’s American Job Centers in Hunt Valley, Randallstown and Eastpoint provide free career consultation and development resources and services, career placement assistance and career training. 

Revised September 11, 2017