This study reviews the literature on breast cancer in general and narrows to within the context of the homeless population of Skid Row, Los Angeles, positing that the experience of breast cancer while homeless is a compounded traumatic experience with complex and numerous practical challenges. It poses the following question: What services are available to homeless women on Skid Row, Los Angeles, the information about which can be found online? Which and how many services are dedicated to breast cancer screenings and treatment? Are other types of cancer screening and treatment services advertised on the included service organizations' websites? A thorough online search was conducted to identify services for women living homeless on Skid Row, and a master list of 46 organizations and agencies were created to serve as the foundation for a future website and booklet that will meet the need for a comprehensive and easy-to-use resource for this population. The process of finding the relevant information online about services proved to be more difficult than expected. Information gathered from this search was analyzed to answer the research questions, providing data on the most common services found in the online search as well as the very low level of attention to breast cancer screening and complete lack of cancer treatment options located in the immediate area. Conclusions from this study support the literature that not only is obtaining and early cancer diagnosis more difficult for homeless women overall than for the general population, but also that initiating and being able to follow through on cancer treatment is even more of a challenge. Organizations providing services to homeless women on Skid Row are recommended to improve on two major tasks: a) Increase programming for breast cancer and other types of cancer awareness, screening, and treatment, and b) Improve their websites so that they thoroughly and efficiently communicate their offerings to women or their helpers who may be searching online for immediate help.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Homeless women -- Health -- Services for -- California -- Los Angeles; Breast -- Cancer -- Patients -- Services for -- California -- Los Angeles; Skid row -- California -- Los Angeles -- Case studies

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Carrie Castañeda-Sound