Transitioning to independent living: Experiences of homeless young adults in rapid rehousing

Kristen Gurdak, Lynden Bond, Deborah Padgett, Robin Petering

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Rapid rehousing (RRH) is an intervention that is being adopted nationally to assist adolescents and emerging adults who are homeless. RRH provides short-term rental assistance for independent scattered-site housing, in addition to an array of support services for approximately 12–24 months. The aim of this study is to explore the experiences of young adults (18–23 years old) who had previously been homeless and who were enrolled in RRH programs set in two urban Northeastern cities, and their subsequent preparedness for independent living. Our sample mostly consisted of non-Hispanic Black females, many of whom identified as LGBTQ. Semi-structured interviews (n = 15) were conducted after participants had been in the program for nine months - three months prior to their initial program completion date. Thematic analysis revealed three themes: the importance of tangible support, communication among all parties: staff lead the way, and “I gotta start learning to do it on my own”. These domains provided essential assistance for young people to attain their goals and through this process they learned skills to live independently and transition into adulthood. These findings suggest that rapid rehousing programs and service providers should focus on these domains to facilitate successful transition to independent living for this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number102076
JournalEvaluation and Program Planning
StatePublished - Jun 2022


  • Homeless
  • Housing
  • Qualitative
  • Rapid rehousing
  • Young adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Social Psychology
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Strategy and Management
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


Dive into the research topics of 'Transitioning to independent living: Experiences of homeless young adults in rapid rehousing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this