1.4 Preventing, Diverting, and Referring: Keys to Successful Front Doors for Families and Youth

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1.4 Preventing, Diverting, and Referring: Keys to Successful Front Doors for Families and Youth

Speaker: Kim Walker

A strong homelessness system entry point can help some families and youth avoid homelessness or reduce the time they remain homeless by quickly connecting them to the right interventions. This workshop will review the key elements needed to create a successful system entry point. Presenters will discuss the logistics of setting up a successful front door and the outcomes they have achieved as a result of it.

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  • Coordinated entry is great because it improves system performance. By having everyone working together Centralized wait listsFeedback loop
  • Funding – Emergency Assistance, TANF, EFSP funds can be used besides the typical homeless program funding
  • Columbus diverts approximately 25% of homeless familiesDayton somewhere in the 20-30% rangeNot for the majority of households – usually hear rates of 20-30%
  • Where did you sleep last night? If they slept somewhere where they could potentially safely stay again, this might mean they are good candidates for diversion. o What other housing options do you have for the next few days or weeks? Even if there is an option outside of shelter that is only available for a very short time, it’s worth exploring if this housing resource can be used. o (If staying in someone else’s housing) What issues exist with you remaining in your current housing situation? Can those issues be resolved with financial assistance, case management, etc.? If the issues can be solved with case management, mediation, or financial assistance (or all of the above), diversion is a good option. o (If coming from their own unit) Is it possible/safe to stay in your current housing unit? What resources would you need to do that (financial assistance, case management, mediation, transportation, etc.)? If the family could stay in their current housing with some assistance, systems should focus on a quick prevention-oriented solution that will keep the family in their unit.
  • 1.4 Preventing, Diverting, and Referring: Keys to Successful Front Doors for Families and Youth

    1. 1. Kim Walker Capacity Building AssociateNational Alliance to End Homelessness
    2. 2. Defining Coordinated Intake  COORDINATED INTAKE: One place or process for the homeless assistance system that controls intake and assessment, determines when referrals are made and how, and serves as the initial HMIS data entry point  Centralized intake: One location  Decentralized Intake: Multiple locations (possibly every provider)  Virtual Intake: Telephone-based (2-1-1)
    3. 3. Why Do We Care About Coordinated Entry?  Sends household to intervention of the best fit from the start/consumer benefits Provides system-wide prevention and diversion opportunities Improves system efficiency Fosters more collaboration among providers Improves ability to perform well on key outcomes ESG Mandate
    4. 4. Prevention, Diversion, Rapid Re-Housing 
    5. 5. Defining Prevention  Short-term or one-time assistance to help a person maintain their current housing situation May include short-term service provision (case management, budget help, landlord mediation, etc.) Trick to doing good prevention: good targeting (which involves targeting higher barrier households that mirror the households in shelter)
    6. 6. Defining Shelter Diversion  Finding temporary alternate housing options outside of shelter when appropriate (safe) Prevents unnecessary shelter entry and the accompanying stress Requires service flexibility
    7. 7. Diversion: Questions to Ask  Where did you sleep last night? What other housing options do you have for the next few days or weeks? What issues exist with you remaining in your current housing situation? Can those issues be resolved with financial assistance, case management, etc.? Is it possible/safe to stay in your current housing unit? What resources would you need to do that (financial assistance, case management, mediation, transportation, etc.)?
    8. 8. Alliance “Front Door” Resources http://www.endhomelessness.org/section /training/front_door

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