USICH Blog

August 2012 Archive

31/08/2012 - What We’re Talking About: The Week at USICH - August 27-31

What We're Talking About is a weekly column from USICH Communications on the topics and issues in the news and on our minds. Topics range from international and national conferences, news from around the country, innovative work to highlight, and more. We look forward to catching you up news you may have missed and connect you to articles and resources.

USICH released a general newsletter this week which compiled news from federal agencies, national partners, and cities revamping their approach to homelessness. If you missed it, you can check it out here

A Reminder of the Needs of Veterans Two Years After End of Combat Operations in Iraq 

Today marks the two year anniversary of combat missions in Iraq, a milestone to be sure, but one that must remind the country of the needs of Veterans of that conflict as well as Veterans of previous wars. In Yuma, Arizona, the allocation of the city’s first HUD-VASH vouchers will enable Veterans in that community to have stable housing and access to coordinated supportive services for their recovery. The HUD-VASH program continues to expand to both more communities and to more Veterans because of its ability to stabilize vulnerable Veterans in the long-term. 

28/08/2012 - Chicago’s Plan 2.0 - Implementing Strategies that Work

On August 23, Mayor Emanuel, along with representatives from the City, the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness, New Moms Inc., Catholic Charities, and other keystakeholders,unveiled Chicago’s new Plan 2.0: A Home for Everyone.  Plan 2.0 is based on the vision that ending homelessness is possible and in Chicago, everyone should have a home. 

Building on the progress made under Chicago’s original Plan to End Homelessness, Getting Housed, Staying Housed, Plan 2.0 focuses on seven strategic priorities: the crisis response system, access to stable and affordable housing, youth homelessness, employment, advocacy and civic engagement, cross-systems integration, and capacity building. 

Chicago’s Plan 2.0 leverages the framework of Opening Doors and addresses many of the actions USICH outlines as essential to preventing and ending homelessness across America...

27/08/2012 - The Power of Collaboration at Work in Los Angeles

I left Los Angeles on August 16 with both a new “I Am Home For Good” lapel pin and a new lesson in the power of collaboration.

USICH Executive Director Barbara Poppe and I were privileged to attend the Home For Good Funders Collaborative event in Los Angeles (previously described here) at which the funding partners announced awards to 30 nonprofit organizations. That funding totaled $105 million of public and private investments  and will result in more than 1,000 people becoming stably housed in the coming year with support to remain in  that housing in the years ahead. Each event attendee received an “I Am Home For Good” lapel pin honoring their support and contributions; such pins will also be provided to every person housed through the funding awards announced. The Funders Collaborative’s accomplishments are truly remarkable and one important indicator of broader change in Los Angeles. 

24/08/2012 - What We’re Talking About: The Week at USICH - August 20-24

What We're Talking About is a weekly column from USICH Communications on the topics and issues in the news and on our minds. Topics range from international and national conferences, news from around    the country, innovative work to highlight, and more. We look forward to catching you up news you may have missed and connect you to articles and resources.

Chicago's Plan 2.0: A Home for Everyone Released 

Yesterday, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel along with representatives from the City, the Chicago Alliance to End Homelessness, New Moms Inc., Catholic Charities and other agencies unveiled Chicago's new Plan 2.0: A Home for Everyone. This new plan is based on the vision that that ending homelessness is possible and that, in Chicago, everyone should have a home. The plan leverages the framework of Opening Doors while focusing on seven strategic priorities: the crisis response system, access to stable and affordable housing, youth homelessness, employment, advocacy and civic engagement, cross-systems integration, and capacity building.

22/08/2012 - Solution-Focused Thinking Across the Entire Service Delivery System – Making the Vision a Reality, Part 2 of 2

In the first part of this blog entry, Iain DeJong of OrgCode Consulting gave the first five insights he’s gained while working with communities across the country retooling their community plans. He continues his insights in Part 2. Missed Part 1? Read it here.

20/08/2012 - Solution-Focused Thinking Across the Entire Service Delivery System – Making the Vision a Reality, Part 1 of 2

I have the great fortune of visiting with communities throughout North America that are working on ending homelessness, as well as providing advice to service providers and governments on other continents. It is a pleasure to share 12 insights and commentary in this guest blog on tangible steps being taken that move from the declaration of wanting to end homelessness to sustainable, concrete action that demonstrates results.

17/08/2012 - What We’re Talking About: The Week at USICH - August 13-17

What We're Talking About is a weekly column from USICH Communications on the topics and issues in the news and on our minds. Topics range from international and national conferences, news from around    the country, innovative work to highlight, and more. We look forward to catching you up news you may have missed and connect you to articles and resources. 

LA’s Historic Investment to End Chronic Homelessness - Home For Good

Yesterday USICH celebrated with our partners in LA the $105 million public and private investment in Home For Good, a collaborative initiative to end chronic homelessness in Los Angeles by 2016. Home for Good is an initiative of the United Way of LA, the LA Chamber of Commerce, and spearheaded in the philanthropic sector by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation. This historic commitment goes to further the model begun in LA County’s Project 50 program, which focuses on Housing First for the most vulnerable LA residents experiencing chronic homelessness.  

15/08/2012 - What You Can Learn from Successful Efforts Around the Country

USICH highlights the work of communities around the country that are making progress in their efforts to end homelessness. These highlights are a part of the Opening Doors Across America initiative and allow communities to share the secrets to their success so that others can learn from them.

Our most recent interview was with Mary Simons in Chatanooga where chronic homelessness has decreased 89% in the last four years. Learn more about how Chattanooga and other cities and states are achieving their goals on our Communities In Focus page.

13/08/2012 - A Unique Permanent Supportive Housing Plan and Using Medicaid to Make it Happen: My time in Louisiana

I spent August 8, 9, and 10 in Louisiana with Don Moulds, the Acting Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation at the Department of Health and Human Services. Don is also Secretary Sebelius’ point person for USICH. We went to talk with people operating and overseeing the Louisiana Permanent Supportive Housing project. For those who aren’t familiar with this incredible project, you can find more information from the Corporation for Supportive Housing, which highlighted this state-wide project as part of their Focus on Health Care Series in February 2012. If you don’t have time to listen to the webinar now, here’s the short version:  after the hurricanes in 2005 and 2006, the state, advocates, and community providers worked together to figure out how to help people with one-time federal recovery investments. What has emerged is a unique model to use these new resources for housing and supportive services to provide permanent supportive housing across the region. Federal investments included Community Development Block Grant funds, Shelter Plus Care and Section 8 Housing Choice Vouchers. 

  

10/08/2012 - What We’re Talking About: the Week at USICH – August 6-10, 2012

What We're Talking About is a new weekly column from USICH Communications on the topics and issues in the news and on our minds. Topics range from international and national conferences, news from around the country, innovative work to highlight, and more. We look forward to catching you up news you may have missed and connect you to articles and resources.

HEARTH Act News:

The new HEARTH Act Continuum of Care Interim Rule was posted on the Federal Registry last week. As a part of its release HUD has posted the rule and several pieces of guidance on HUDHRE and HUD expects to continue to add updates and guidance in the coming weeks and months.

08/08/2012 - This Week’s Update on Taking Veteran Homelessness to Zero

Earlier this week President Obama signed the comprehensive bipartisan bill entitled “Honoring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012.” This legislation addresses issues for Veterans in areas of health (including extending rural health access), loan guarantees and benefits, protects the memorial services for Veterans, and compensates Marine families who were affected by contaminated well water at Camp LeJuene. Notably, this legislation fully renews existing funding for pivotal programs for Veterans experiencing homelessness, such as HUD-VASH, more. 

06/08/2012 - The Siemer Institute on Family Stability: Maintaining Housing Stability to Ensure Academic Success

One of the most detrimental trends affecting a student’s ability to succeed in the classroom happens outside of school walls. When parents or guardians are struggling to make ends meet financially or shifting housing locations due to work, the children involved are often forced to move from one school to another and then another and so on. This constant mobility is disruptive, making it difficult for a child to feel connected to a school, to make connections with new friends, to be accepted socially, but most importantly, to stay on target academically. The Siemer Institute for Family Stability (SIFS) headquartered at the United Way of Central Ohio is responding to the challenge.

03/08/2012 - What We’re Talking About: The Week at USICH – July 30-August 3

What We're Talking About is a weekly column from USICH Communications on the topics and issues in the news and on our minds. Topics range from international and national conferences, news from around the country, innovative work to highlight, and more. We look forward to catching you up on news you may have missed and connect you to articles and resources.  

The importance of integrating health care and housing in our work to end homelessness cannot be overstated. Homelessness exacerbates health issues, and for those living unsheltered, the streets can be a dangerous and inadequate place to receive consistent access to care or recover from injuries.  A safe, stable place to call home is pivotal for those with poor health or those with chronic conditions. Housing also provides a way to ensure that preventable diseases and illness do not occur. 

The mobile van team at Health Care for the Homeless in Alameda County sheds light on these issues at a local level, where they see individuals in need of both primary and behavioral health care without consistent access to care. 

01/08/2012 - HUD, USICH Hears from You: Understanding the Needs of the LGBT Homeless Population

On July 16, 2012, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness hosted a listening session entitled “Understanding the Needs of the LGBT Homeless Population” at the National Alliance to End Homelessness’ 2012 National Conference on Ending Homelessness. This listening session allowed Federal partners to learn from advocates, community partners, and homeless service providers about the challenges, opportunities, and best practices related to the implementation of HUD’s new Equal Access to Housing in HUD Programs Regardless of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity final rule.

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