When trying to define a general population of homeless youth, it’s hard because there is some important differences. Though there’s not a lot of literature supporting these definitions, they are frequently used terms.
Runaway or throwaway – fleeing physical, sexual, abuse or neglect; running away from foster care, or abandoned by parents/care givers
Episodic or couch surfing – stays with friends or extended family off and on
Unaccompanied using shelters- may not have been homeless long
Travelers – homeless longer, may have more or less adapted to the streets, less likely to access services