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The Faces of Homelessness Speakers’ Bureau is one of the most effective public education and organizing tools of the National Coalition for the Homeless.  Its mission, in keeping with that of NCH, is to bring people together to identify issues to be tackled in the movement to end homelessness.  By discussing the stereotypes, myths, and misconceptions of homelessness, we can begin to move past our obstacles, get to the root causes of poverty, and figure out how we can prevent its worst outcomes. 

In addition to accomplishing this educational goal, participating in a Faces Panel empowers people who have experienced homelessness.  Members of the Speakers’ Bureau feel the satisfaction of making a difference in their own lives and the lives of others by helping people to understand a highly misunderstood situation.  Using their own experiences, speakers put a human “face” on homelessness and inspire individuals to become involved in the struggle to end homelessness on both the local and national level. 

Typically, the Speakers’ Bureaus present to middle school, high school, and college students, civic organizations, religious groups, and at other special events. 

The standard presentation format includes a short video about homelessness in America, up to three homeless or formerly homeless panelists, and a moderator to facilitate the discussion and a brief question and answer session.  Participants are strongly encouraged to ask questions throughout and to engage in conversation. 

We can help anyone set up a Speakers’ Bureau anywhere in the nation.  We provide assistance with everything from recruiting and training speakers and moderators to planning and holding events.  For more information, contact Speakers’ Bureau  Project Director, Michael Stoops at 202-462-4822. You can also reach him via email at mstoops@nationalhomeless.org.



Below is a synopsis* of the curriculum adopted by Miami-Dade County Public Schools.  It was created by Miami-Dade County Public Schools in collaboration with the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust to capture students’ attention and foster an appreciation of the challenges that homeless people face.

Pre-K and Kindergarten:
         Lesson Plan: An Understanding of Homelessness
To give children an understanding of the needs that we all have to be comfortable and comforted.  

Grades 1-3:
         Lesson Plan: An Understanding of Homelessness
Encourage predictions and assumptions from children about why people carry bags and suitcases.

Grades 4-5:
       Lesson Plan: A Car for a Home/Shelter in a Box
Encourage predictions and assumptions from children about why people sleep in boxes or on the street.  Provide students with an understanding of the extent of the problem of homelessness. 

Grades 6:
       Lesson Plan: Who are they/should we care/what does it mean?
Students will compare and contrast the definition of what it means to be homeless and identify strategies that can raise sensitivity for anyone in the group. 

Grades 7-8:
       Lesson Plan: What is Homelessness?
This lesson will provide students with an understanding of what homelessness is, who it can affect, and how they can make a difference.

Grades 9-12
       Lesson Plan: Homelessness: Fact or Myth
Students will examine their preconceived notions of the homeless, learn who the homeless are, understand philanthropic efforts to improve the conditions of homeless children, and explore ways to help the homeless. 

*Lesson plans and descriptions were taken directly from Project Upstart Homeless Children & Youth Program’s Homeless Education Curriculum Manual.

CONTENTS: Main page | pdf of full report | Acknowledgements | Dedication | Executive Summary | Purpose, Methodology, and Previous Reports | Introduction | Historical Summary of Hate Crimes/Violence Data for 1999-2008 | Summary of Hate Crimes/Violence Data in 2008 | Summary of Teen/Young Adult Involvement in Hate Crimes/Violent Acts | Summary of Ages of the Accused versus Ages of the Victims | Summary of Victims Who Were Middle-Aged | Cities where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred in 2008 | Map of Cities where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred in 2008 | States where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred in 2008 | Map of States where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred in 2008 | Cities Where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred – 1999-2008 | Map of Cities Where Hate Crimes/Violence Occurred – 1999-2008 | Comparison of Hate Crime Homicides vs. Lethal Attacks on Homeless Individuals | National Media Coverage of Hate Crimes/Violent Acts Against Homeless People | Video Exploitation of Homeless People | Recognizing Anti-Homeless Violence as Hate Crime, by Brian Levin | Legislation | Recommendations for Action | Model City/County/State Legislation/Resolutions | Adopted City/County/State Legislation/Resolutions | Public Education Initiatives | Listing of Incidents by City | Case Descriptions Involving Deaths | Case Descriptions Involving Non-Lethal Rape/Sexual Assault | Case Descriptions Involving Non-Lethal Setting on Fire | Case Descriptions Involving Non-Lethal Beatings | Case Descriptions Involving Non-Lethal Shootings | Case Descriptions Involving Non-Lethal Police Harassment/Brutality | Appendix A: Sources | Appendix B: NCH Hate Crimes Public Service Ads |

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