by Kathy Burke, Seattle Pacific University

This webquest seeks to direct students into a discussion about the plight of homeless in America; clarifying definitions, contributing factors, services and support agencies, and a service-learning component.



It is tourist season and your community relies heavily on the revenue generated during this time.  However, the growing population of homeless that sleep in doorways and on park benches and panhandle on street corners creates a bad image and threatens this economy.

You and a team of four people have been given the task of researching the problem of homelessness and creating a community-wide strategy to manage the problem.   Your team will identify the issues and present a report to the community and make recommendations to the City Council.

Who are the homeless? Why are they homeless? What social services are supporting them? What can be done?

Your team will explore all of the contributing factors, and identify the government programs and non-profit programs that are presently provided. Through this research you will be able to list the issues, contributing factors, programs and services available, and unmet needs.  From the point of view of an advocate, you will use your research to prepare a persuasive paper to report your findings.  You will interview the public and host a public meeting to glean the perspective of the community on homelessness.  As a team you will prepare a PowerPoint presentation  to report to the community and to offer a community-wide strategic plan to manage this issue in your community.

Good Luck! The city is trusting you to resolve the vagrant issue before tourism is impacted and have a long-term plan to manage homelessness.