Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Social Work


School of Social Work

First Reader/Committee Chair

Rosemary McCaslin


Homelessness is a multifaceted social problem that affects thousands of people every single day throughout the United States. In recent years, research has begun to look at the impact of social support on the lives of those that are homeless. To further explore this topic, this study examines the impact of social support on the length of time someone is homeless, in search of notable correlations. This study was completed using a quantitative research approach and a sample of 54 homeless individuals. Participants were recruited from two leading homeless service agencies in the City of Riverside and asked to complete an anonymous questionnaire composed of a demographic section, questions on their unique homeless situation, length of time homeless and current social support. Results of this study found that there is no significant difference between formal and informal forms of social support and the presence of any can be associated with experiencing fewer episodes of homelessness. Future research should continue to explore the intricacy of this social problem and conduct larger scale comprehensive studies that can provide a better insight into the impact of social support. Existing research and this study show that the availability of social support in the lives of those that are homeless can have positive outcomes in the improvement of their situation.

Included in

Social Work Commons