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6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems
 

6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems

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6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems...

6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems

Speaker: Devra Edelman

Having supportive, permanent housing-focused shelters is a crucial piece to any Housing First homeless assistance system. In this workshop, presenters will talk about the key role shelters play in improving system performance on key outcomes and reducing episodes of homelessness in their communities.

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  • Working to end homelessness is similar to my work in the PC in the early 90s to eradicate guinea work – a water borne parasitic disease that can be prevented fairly easily through providing drinking water via wells or piped water or simply filtering water through a cloth. Just as the root solution to ending homelessness is housing, the root solution to ending guinea worm is safe drinking water. Still, if you only implement the solution, guinea worm could not be eradicated because people would still use open water holes and transmit the larvae via open wounds when getting water. In order to address both the root cause and the “entire tree” so to say, you have to both protect and care for the wounds- or provide emergency shelter; educate villagers about how guinea worm is transmitted and how they can stop transmitting it – or provide life-skills training, etc. AND shift the cultures.
  • For Hamilton Family Center in particular, this process resulted in our First Avenues program, which focuses specifically on what we now refer to as Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing – with a key component being shallow rental subsidies to rapidly re-house families from the City’s shelter and transitional housing programs.
  • This chart shows how there has been a direct correlation between the number of families on San Francisco’s central waitlist for shelter – i.e. those waiting to be placed in a 3-6 month shelter unit – and First Avenues medium-term rental subsidies. In particular, we can see how the influx of HPRP funds in Sept. 2009 through 2010 decreased the waitlist from an average of 189 families at the end of 2009 to 130 families at the beginning of 2010. Unfortunately, we also saw a sharp increase in the waitlist in the last half of 2011- to a record high of over 260 families in Nov. & Dec. 2011 as HPRP funds have diminished and all subsidy slots were filled. The good news is that an infusion of private funding and funding from the Mayor’s office that came at the end of 2011 as a result of publicity around the large increase in family homelessness in SF has allowed us to provide subsidies and move-in support to rapidly re-house 28 families during the past month, with a goal of re-housing 60 families during the first few months of this year.
  • In looking at what we’ve learned through our transition toward Housing First and rapid re-housing as HFC – some of the key elements that we have found to support “smart shelter” with a focus on housing outcomes are….
  • One of the most promising practices we have found to assist all of our programs at HFC with identifying the best housing fit for each family has been our Housing Assessment Matrix – or HAM Tool. We began to use this for all intakes for housing services at our First Avenues program in 2008
  • During the past year, we have expanded the use of the HAM tool to our Emergency Shelter intakes and rolling out a version to be used as part of our transitional housing referral application, so it will be used to assess housing needs at all entry points. The tool includes an eligibility screening section and a housing barriers assessment. The assessment gives families and case managers a ranking of various housing options based upon (the above) assessment indicators, with the option with the highest score indicating the best fit. Since implementing the tool, we have found that certain areas are very important to assess – such as whether or not any members of the family are pregnant, which may indicate a larger need for a supportive or deeply subsidized housing option.
  • We have found that, in addition to a consistent focus on stable housing, three core philosophies are key to shifting the agency culture to support housing outcomes…HR, TI services and EBS – which supports a shift from providing services to families to one that supports the family in evaluating their own level of stability and effort along with staff in order to support the efforts of the family, rather than replacing the efforts of the family (with the efforts of staff)

6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems 6.2 Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems Presentation Transcript

  • Smart Shelter: How Shelters Can Improve Outcomes in Housing First Systems 2012 NAEH National Conference on Ending Family and Youth Homelessness Devra Edelman Deputy Director, Programs Hamilton Family Center February 10, 2012 DEdelman@hamiltonfamilycenter.org
  • Guinea Worm Eradication andEnding HomelessnessEradicating Guinea Clean Water HousingWorm / EndingHomelessness =Root Solutions: Water filtration and infrastructure Affordable Housing (Including (wells; piping; etc.) to provide Subsidized Housing; Shallow Rental clean drinking water Subsidies; Permanent Supportive Housing; etc.)If you only implement the solution NO ~ Open wounds in watering NO ~ families and individuals may stillwill the issue be addressed? holes considered sacred will become homeless for various reasons continue to release larvae into (evictions; tragedy; health issues; etc.) drinking waterHow to Address Both the Root Protection and care of Wounds Emergency Shelter that provides basicand the Entire Tree: Education of Villagers in Culturally needs AND Appropriate and Sensitive Manner Focuses on life-skills training, wage & (VBHWs) income development & sustainability, ~ Shift Culture to encourage safe and housing placement water ~ Shift agency culture to Housing First
  • Hamilton Family Center - Overview Rebuilding Lives ~ Ending Homelessness The mission of Hamilton Family Center is to break the cycle of homelessness and poverty. Through a Housing First approach, we provide a continuum of housing solutions and comprehensive services that promote self-sufficiency for families and individuals, and foster the potential of children and youth. Hamilton Family Emergency Center Hamilton Family First Avenues: Residences Housing Solutions Project Potential: Child and Youth Services Hamilton Family Dudley Apartments Transitional Housing Supportive Services 2
  • San Francisco’sFamily Homeless Services System HOMELESS FAMILIES Hamilton Family Providence / Emergency Oshun / Winter Center Shelter Connecting Point Centralized Wait List for Full-Service Raphael House Shelter Hamilton Family St. Joseph’s Compass Residences Family Center Family Shelter
  • San Francisco ~ Population Snapshot San Francisco Population ~ 805,235 (2010) 2011 Point-in-Time Count: 6,455 Homeless Persons 48% (3,106) Unsheltered 635 Homeless Persons in Families 15% (95) Unsheltered 4
  • Housing First Principles:  Homelessness is first and  Everyone is valuable and foremost a housing problem capable of being a valuable and should be treated as such resident and community member  Housing is a basic human need and right to which all are  Residents, property managers, entitled and service providers work together to integrate services  Families are more responsive into housing to intervention and social service support once in  Client focused services permanent and stable housing  Move homeless families into  People who are homeless or permanent, affordable housing on the verge of homelessness as Rapidly as Possible should be returned to or stabilized in permanent  Time-limited, home-based housing as quickly as possible support services and connected to resources necessary to sustain that housing
  • Housing First Service Delivery Components  Emergency services that address the immediate need for shelter or stabilization in current housing  Housing, Resource, and Support Services Assessment which focuses on housing needs, preferences, and barriers; resource acquisition (e.g., entitlements); and identification of services needed to sustain housing  Housing placement assistance including housing location and placement; financial assistance with housing costs (e.g., security deposit, first month’s rent, move-in and utilities connection, short- or long-term housing subsidies); advocacy and assistance in addressing housing barriers (e.g., poor credit history or debt, prior eviction, criminal conviction)  Case management services (frequently time-limited) specifically focused on maintaining permanent housing or the acquisition and sustainment of permanent housing
  • Shifting Gears toward Smart Shelter:Rapid Re-Housing Strategies Community Needs Problem Statement Schwab Foundation Initiative, convenes  San Francisco is one the most expensive Bay Area collaboration; identifies Rapid and competitive housing markets in the Re-Housing as one of three priorities to country. Rents increased by 6% from 2010 end homelessness (July, 2004) to 2011 and vacancies have decreased Homeless Families Services Redesign with the average rent for a 1-bdrm apt. at Committee: Community Stakeholders $2,300. recommend the development of Rental  Homeless families lack the resources to Subsidies as the Number One Priority afford market rate rent. (June 2006)  Stock of existing affordable housing for SF Local Homeless Coordinating Board extremely low income families does not identifies Permanent Housing meet demand (subsidized according to need) as their  A Rapid Re-Housing Strategy requires a number one priority in the Five Year systemic shift in programmatic focus, Strategic Plan. (January 2008) resources, and goals.  Emergency and interim housing programs HPRP and HEARTH Act support federal lack an assessment tool to assist in shift in priorities and funding for determining the best housing fit Housing First programs (2009 to  New shallow rental subsidy and present) eviction prevention funding lacks a strong evaluation component
  • Shifting Gears toward Smart Shelter:Rapid Re-Housing Strategies Influential Factors Schwab Foundation funds a Shallow subsidy pilot program (January 2005) Hamilton Family Center redirects $500,000 in emergency shelter resources toward Housing First initiatives (July 2006) SF Mayor & Advocacy Groups support Housing First approach (2005) Homeless Family Redesign Recommendations from community stakeholders results in $2.3 million in new Shallow Rental Subsidy funding for homeless, at-risk, and doubled-up families (February 2007) The ARRA provides $8.75M to San Francisco for Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing (Sept 2009) Salesforce.com Foundation and SF Mayor’s Homeless Assistance Fund allocate $3M to rapidly re-house families from SF Shelter Waitlist of over 250 families (Dec. 2011) 8
  • Shifting Gears toward Smart Shelter:Rapid Re-Housing Strategies Outcomes  Fund shallow rental subsidies, eviction prevention assistance and move-in support for homeless, at-risk, and doubled-up families in San Francisco.  Develop family shelter services to focus on: Connections to Mainstream Resources (including Childcare); Wage & Income Development & Sustainability; and Housing.  Develop Housing Assessment Matrix (HAM) Tool to identify best housing fit.  Increase the number of families Rapidly Re-Housed from the family shelters to permanent housing.  Increase the number of families for whom homelessness is prevented and who are diverted from shelter.  Develop services that follow families into housing and focus on income development and housing stability 9
  • First Avenues Rental Subsidy Entries &San Francisco Family Shelter Waitlist 300 250 200 Total First Avenues Medium 150 Term Rental Rapid Rehousing Entries Shelter Waitlist Average 100 50 HPRP Begins 0 10
  • Lessons Learned ~ Key Components ofSmart Shelter  Housing Assessment as early as possible upon entry into system and incorporated throughout programs.  Housing Advocate Case Managers at entry points Connecting Point & Emergency Shelter  Collaboration between Shelter Case Managers and Housing Case Managers weekly Exit Planning meetings  Aftercare case management post housing to strengthen roots in new home and community  Systems Level Collaboration and Partnerships: Shelter Consortium; Family Eviction Prevention Collaborative; HPRP Workgroup; Rapid Re-Housing Network; etc.  Implement systemic processes in programs that are geared toward periodic review of progress toward employment and housing Team reporting on rapid re-housing, employment and increased income.
  • Housing Assessment Matrix (HAM) Tool:Strategically targeting resources to maximize opportunities for homeless familiesHousing Assessment Matrix:http://hamiltonfamilycenter.org/Videos & News / Evidence Based Practice
  • Housing Assessment Matrix ~Options & Indicators Assessment Indicators include:• Housing Assessment Matrix (HAM)  Income level tool used at all entry points: • Emergency Shelter Intake  History of Homelessness • Transitional Housing Referral /  Housing options Application  Lease History • Housing Subsidy Program  History of Evictions Application  Age of Primary Caregiver  Mental Health History• Housing Options / “Fit” May be:  Substance Use • Market Rate Housing  Criminal Justice Barriers • Short-term Rental Assistance  Temporary Financial Strain • Medium-term Rental Assistance  Recent Trauma • Affordable Housing  Child Welfare History • Deeply Subsidized Housing  Education Level • Transitional Housing Program  Work Experience • Permanent Supportive Housing  Work Inhibiting Disabilities  Income Plans  Family Composition  Transportation Barriers 13  Child Care Barriers  Income Sources
  • Cultural Shift to Smart ShelterAgency-wide Cultural Shift to support Core Philosophies of: Harm Reduction: Motivating change in a collaborative, empathic environment; policies based upon behaviors; explore options with clients and encourage to identify own needs Trauma-Informed Services: adopting a holistic view of care and recognizing the connections between housing, employment, mental and physical health, substance abuse, and trauma histories; and Provide Effort Based Support: moving from a model of Social Services to Social Support While focusing on STABLE HOUSING FIRST at all times! 14
  • Questions??? Contact: Devra M. Edelman Deputy Director, Programs Hamilton Family Center 415-409-2100 x122 dedelman@hamiltonfamilycenter.org www.hamiltonfamilycenter.org