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2.1: Basics of Rapid Re-Housing
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2.1: Basics of Rapid Re-Housing

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Presented by Linda Olsen. …

Presented by Linda Olsen.

2.1: Basics of Rapid Re-Housing

Rapid re-housing programs offer a constellation of services, including housing search aid, rental assistance, and transitional case management to help families minimize their time in shelter to secure a home of their own. This workshop provides an introduction to rapid re-housing for families and includes a discussion of how the model is being used to serve domestic violence survivors.


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  • 1. RAPID RE-HOUSING AND DV SURVIVORS Basics of Rapid Re-Housing National Alliance to End Homelessness 2011 National Conference February 10, 2011
  • 2. DV SURVIVORS: THEY’RE EVERYWHERE!
    • “Among mothers with children experiencing homelessness, more than 80 percent had previously experienced domestic violence.” (Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness 2010)
  • 3. WASHINGTON FAMILIES FUND FIVE YEAR REPORT (2004-2009)
    • In the Moderate-Needs Family Profile for families served, 66% had experienced domestic violence.
    • In the High-Needs Family Profile for families served, 93% had experienced physical or sexual violence.
  • 4. HOUSING STABILITY CAN MAKE THE DIFFERENCE
    • The availability of safe, affordable, and stable housing is critical for a survivor’s ability to escape an abusive partner.
    • Without viable housing options, many survivors are forced to remain in abusive relationships, accept inadequate or unsafe housing conditions, or become homeless. (Anne Menard)
  • 5. CONSIDERATIONS WHEN WORKING WITH DV SURVIVORS
    • Safety
    • Sabotage (from an abuser, abuser’s family, and even broader community)
  • 6. WE NEED TO BUILD SOME BRIDGES!
    • Explore ways to develop and/or strengthen relationships between housing/homeless providers and DV programs
    • Multidisciplinary partnerships necessary to develop policies and programs that increase battered women’s housing options and do not increase their danger.
  • 7. FOR HOUSING/HOMELESS SERVICE PROVIDERS
    • Include basic domestic violence dynamics and resources as part of staff training
    • Learn how to ask the questions and how to talk about DV resources
    • Develop a protocol on how to respond when domestic violence is disclosed
  • 8. SUGGESTIONS FOR COLLABORATION
    • Plan relationship-building activities among housing/homeless and DV programs
    • Develop a consultative relationship with a DV agency
    • Some jurisdictions have implemented MOUs for formal relationships between DV and homeless/housing agencies.
  • 9. CAN RAPID RE-HOUSING WORK FOR DV SURVIVORS?
    • YES!
    • Domestic Violence Housing First Project in Washington State (funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation)
    • Cohort of 4 agencies across the state, from rural to urban
  • 10. HOW CAN IT WORK?
    • Survivor-Centered Advocacy:
      • Safety planning
      • Empowerment
      • Reinforcement of autonomy and self-determination
      • Offering options
      • Voluntary services
  • 11. Need Community Relationships
    • Public Housing Authorities (VAWA protections for DV survivors and inclusion of domestic violence as part of every 5-year plan)
    • Landlord relationships and DV training
  • 12. FIRST YEAR RESULTS
    • Out of 112 participants (point in time):
      • 40.2% had permanent housing at program entry AND have retained their housing through the program’s assistance
      • 52.7% obtained permanent housing through Housing First efforts AND are still in permanent housing
      • 2.7% are working on permanent housing
      • 4.5% obtained permanent housing but are no longer in permanent housing
  • 13. Where did those not in permanent housing come from?
    • 25% came from emergency shelter
    • 12.5% came from transitional housing
    • 12.5% came from an institution
    • 25% were living with family/friends
    • 25% were unknown
  • 14. LEVELS OF ASSISTANCE
    • Light touch—simple, discrete needs that are met quickly
    • Medium touch—discrete needs met as above, plus connected with agency’s services for a short period of time
    • Higher needs—all of the above, plus long term planning with advocate in order to obtain housing, improve financial situation, and address other issues.
  • 15. SERVICE LEVEL FOR THIS GROUP
    • 55.9% Light Touch
    • 27% Medium Touch
    • 17.1% High Need
  • 16. IN SUMMARY
    • You serve domestic violence survivors
    • Plan how to do it well
    • Develop partnerships with DV programs
    • Integrate safety and survivor center advocacy into your service approach—along with trauma-informed services
    • Make sure your community relationships include domestic violence information
  • 17. QUESTIONS? Linda Olsen, MA, MSW Housing Project Coordinator Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence [email_address] 206-389-2515 x 205