Life at Horizons

Working together to find what’s possible for homeless families

Working together to find what’s possible for homeless families

Horizons for Homeless Children knows that strong relationships lead to great outcomes, both in and outside the classroom.  This Fall, Horizons is extending its relationship with Lesley University in a new and innovative model that will build upon the shared expertise both institutions have in helping others and tackling issues of social justice.

Beginning in September, Lesley will bring its Certificate in Child Homelessness Studies onto Horizon’s campus in Roxbury, where 25 employees will have the opportunity to take classes part time on site.  Offered at no cost to enrolled employees, the goal is to provide a means for staff to enhance their knowledge and technique used when working with or on behalf of homeless children and their families.

“Bringing professional development opportunities within reach of our staff is one way we’re making Horizons for Homeless Children a leader in the field and an excellent place to work. We know what we invest in training, with the help of generous donors, helps our employees and improves our outcomes for the families we support,” said Horizons CEO Kate Barrand.

This joint venture will also provide Lesley University with an opportunity to hear and learn from those who are direct practitioners in the space. “Our mutual goal is to address the complex, and often invisible, nature of homelessness and associated trauma, in part through relationships with highly skilled and knowledgeable educators and human service providers,” said Lisa Fiore, Professor and Director of the Child Homelessness Initiative. “This partnership will broaden the impact of our curriculum, and will, in turn, inform new strategies and advocacy efforts to support the development of our nation’s youngest citizens.”


“When you come to work at a place like Horizons, you do it with a desire to love and serve others.  My colleagues here do that every day and this program was an opportunity to build upon their professional knowledge with academic coursework they can use to deepen their practice,” offered Wendy Kennedy, Director of Education at Horizons.  “As a team, we believe healthy strong families make a healthy society and the learning that’s taking place in the Lesley classroom at Horizons is our best effort to build that.”

The curriculum consists of five undergraduate courses and is taught by a team of multi-disciplinary faculty.  The class will meet Wednesday evenings. Said program participant, Amy Karewa, “The additional background the coursework will provide me with will be invaluable in my work to further Horizon’s mission. The better we all understand the causes of homelessness, the more effectively we can work together to eliminate it.”