BUILDING RESILIENCY SKILLS IN CHILDREN EXPERIENCING HOMELESSNESS: A CASE STUDY OF A SUMMER LEARNING PROGRAM

M. Finkenberg

Stevenson University (UNITED STATES)
This paper is a case study of a social-emotional learning program (SEL) in a summer camp serving children living in homeless shelters and transitional housing. The purpose of this case study is to retrospectively assess the implementation and effectiveness of this program. The goals of the SEL program were to promote resiliency skills in order to help children overcome the adverse situation of homelessness and the stressors leading up to homelessness. A summer camp such as this is a unique milieu for an SEL program, and there is limited research on the implementation and effectiveness of such a program.

The findings of this study indicate that an SEL program can be implemented effectively in a summer camp serving children living in homeless shelters and transitional housing. The context and input evaluation determined that the SEL program was designed to meet the unique needs of the children in the camp. Further, the preparation of the staff and volunteers helped ensure program fidelity. Early product evaluation findings indicate growth and development in the area of social-emotional learning.