Date

May 2007

Document Type

Article

Department

Communication

Degree

Master of Arts (MA)

Chair

Gina Barker

Primary Subject Area

Mass Communications

Keywords

Homeless, One Homeless Night, experiential learning, education, social-justice, attitude change, perceptions, homelessness, Canada, United States, justice

Abstract

Experiential learning provides an opportunity for participants to engage with their respective subject matter in an interactive, effective way. One Homeless Night, an experiential learning event, communicates the nature, causes, and complexity of homelessness through a street walk, facilitated orientation, interactions with the homeless, a service learning component, and finally, an overnight experience at an organization that works with the homeless. This study endeavored to ascertain the extent to which One Homeless Night is effective in the communication of the true nature of homelessness to participants. Key findings of One Homeless Night included increased understanding of the complexity of homelessness, increased empathy with the homeless, and a greater understanding of the causes and challenges of homelessness. The final purpose of this study was to research effective education on homelessness and to contribute to policy-making that supports credible work with the homeless.

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