4.11 Matt White

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4.11 Matt White

  1. 1. Using Diversion to Reduce Homelessness<br />NAEH National Conference<br />July 2011<br />
  2. 2. Workshop Purpose<br />To understand what shelter diversion is and how to develop diversion practices to help meet local prevention and homeless system goals<br />To learn about operational practices of promising diversion practices<br />To explore opportunities for diversion development under HEARTH<br />
  3. 3. Workshop Presenters<br />Matt White, Abt Associates<br />Amanda Andere, FACETS, Fairfax County, VA<br />Joyce Tavon, Father Bills and MainSpring, Quincy, MA<br />Faith Frazier, BAMSI, Brockton, MA<br />
  4. 4. What is “Shelter Diversion”?<br />Strategy:<br />Identify and divert at-risk persons and provide linkage to other prevention assistance <br />Fundamental Goals:<br />Provides front-line intervention to individuals and families seeking emergency assistance by providing a preliminary assessment and problem-solving to divert clients from accessing the emergency shelter system. <br />The program should reduce the demand for shelter beds by helping at-risk individuals and families find options other than entering emergency shelter.<br />
  5. 5. Key Principles & Concepts<br />Not every person who presents for shelter needs shelter<br />Determine “eligibility” for shelter<br />Divert to prevention and stabilization assistance whenever possible<br />Emergency shelter referral/admission is always last option if no other options<br />Programmatic Focus: crisis intervention and resolution of immediate need<br />Identify plan for safe housing tonight<br />Identify plan for tomorrow and short-term<br />Expedited linkage to homelessness prevention/stabilization resources<br />
  6. 6. Key Principles & Concepts (cont.)<br />Specialized role across homeless system or within shelter “front door”<br />Can be part of stand-alone system program or incorporated part of each shelter provider <br />Staff require special skills, information, supervision<br />Rapid assessment focused on housing needs, options, resources<br />Assess what’s relevant – more assessment information can be collected later<br />Collect and use data<br />Number of contacts, characteristics<br />Disposition<br />Who’s diverted/not diverted and why<br />
  7. 7. Design Questions…<br />Is centralized intake required to make shelter diversion work?<br />How does diversion work when not all the collaborations are in place?<br />How can a CoC fund shelter diversion?<br />Can diversion be implemented over a multi-jurisdictional region?<br />How are staff skills and approaches different in a shelter diversion setting?<br />How can shelter diversion strategies be linked with existing HPRP resources and future HEARTH resources?<br />

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