Daniel Neiditch’s Blog

Homeless, Hungry, and In College

It’s nice to have a rosy view of the college years--a time of personal growth and learning. Bright-eyed young people are figuring out who they are or want to be in a world full of opportunities. We often imagine that the stress of college life ends at too much homework or roommate drama. However, for many students, this view is far from reality. Not only are the more fortunate among the growing number of homeless students ascending into college, we’ve also seen a troubling trend of middle-class students who become poor only by dint of the fact that they are attending college. Loans, grants, part-time [...]

By | September 10th, 2018|

Is Eliminating Homelessness Possible? These Communities Say Yes

Eradicating homelessness in a community won't protect some of its members from needing to spend a night on the streets. This seems counterintuitive; after all, doesn't eliminating homeless hinge on ending the need for homelessness? In a perfect world, maybe — but we don't live in a utopia, and we're not likely to stumble into one anytime soon. The key to effectively combating homelessness lies in taking a ready and responsive approach; in some communities, a coordinated system for mitigating homelessness has already achieved net-zero success. In December of 2015, Rockford, Illinois became the first town in the U.S. to achieve a "functional zero" state [...]

By | June 25th, 2018|

Can Corporate Philanthropy End Homelessness?

Where the public sector falls short, private philanthropy through individual or corporate donors has stepped in to give vital support. In areas like community development, education, and humanitarian aid, corporate philanthropy has demonstrated real value in helping stem the major problems of today. Maybe because it lacks glamor of the arts or the universality of education, or perhaps because it’s such a seemingly insurmountable problem, but homelessness hasn’t historically been the most popular target for large-scale corporate philanthropy. Therefore, it’s been up to cities and states to legislate the issue, with mixed but mostly negative results. The homelessness scourge persists to the detriment of our [...]

By | May 1st, 2018|

Homeless Youth – The Invisible Problem

The years between age 18 and 25 are often thought of as the defining times of our lives. These are the years when young people begin to find their place in the world, whether in education, meaningful employment, or starting their own families. Sadly, there’s an overlooked cohort of this age group who are simply struggling to survive. Among the stories of exciting new opportunities for young people, recently released studies by the University of Chicago have found that one in ten young people nationwide experienced some degree of homelessness in 2016. It’s a damning statement about the state of the fight against homelessness when [...]

By | January 19th, 2018|

New York’s Homeless Grade Schoolers: a Growing Concern

A mention of New York City’s homeless problem will most likely conjure up an image of a grown man huddled in a corner or sitting on the sidewalk, begging for change. While this may represent the most visually present cohort of the city’s homeless, a disconcertingly fast-growing number of the city’s homeless don’t fit this description at all. While the vast majority of them may not be on the street, the city’s homeless children suffer greatly. In the last five years, the number of homeless public school students in the city has jumped to over 110,000, more than two-thirds of the statewide homeless child population. [...]

By | November 30th, 2017|

How the Homeless Get By When Disaster Strikes

Catastrophic natural disasters like the ones we’ve seen over the past few weeks frequently leave millions of Americans without their homes. This level of destruction and displacement often serves as a great shock to the country at large and millions of charity and governmental dollars go toward helping rebuild what was lost for so many families. While this is, of course, a noble pursuit and an appropriately empathetic response, it’s easy to forget that many of the citizens of these stricken regions had already tenuous living arrangements or no place to call home at all. For those disadvantaged residents, the dangers of extreme weather events [...]

By | September 18th, 2017|