The Right Chess Moves Took A Young Boy And His Family Out Of Homelessness

a young child struggles to move a giant chess piece on a street chess board

chess photo by Ingrid Lemaire is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

A 10 year old boy in the U.S. isn’t homeless any longer. His remarkable skill at chess has turned his family’s fortunes around and allowed them to leave a homeless shelter and move to permanent housing. It is fantastic that a 10 year chess player lifted his family out of homelessness —  not something that happens every day and cause for celebration.

How many children are homeless in the U.S.? According to HUD (The US Department of Housing and Urban Development), over 100,000 children were homeless at the most recent point in time count (2018). This represents one in five of all people who were included in the count.

The U.S. Department of Education says that 1,455,537 children under the age of six experienced homelessness in the same year as the point in time count (2017-2018).

Children who experience homelessness at a young age face multiple challenges at a time in their lives when they are growing and learning. The disruption can hit them hard. They may not finish school or go to college or get jobs with enough income to pay for decent housing. As adults, they may again experience homelessness. Read more at School House Connection: Young Children Experiencing Homelessness: An Overview

The Children’s Defense Fund fills in the picture of what is needed to help all children leave homelessness. Housing that is affordable and safe is one pillar. Read more in The State of America’s Children 2021

And what about the uplifting story of a ten year old whizz kid?  Read more in People: 10-Year-Old Refugee, Once Homeless, Becomes National Chess Master: ‘Very Happy’

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