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SafeHome Philadelphia. National Conference on Ending Family Homelessness Seattle, Washington, February 7, 2008 Emergency Assistance: Preventing Homelessness SafeHome Philadelphia created by the Philadelphia Committee to END Homelessness. SafeHome Philadelphia.

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SafeHome Philadelphia

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    1. SafeHomePhiladelphia National Conference on Ending Family HomelessnessSeattle, Washington, February 7, 2008Emergency Assistance: Preventing HomelessnessSafeHome Philadelphiacreated by thePhiladelphia Committee to END Homelessness SafeHome Philadelphia

    2. SafeHomePhiladelphia SafeHome Philadelphia applies the“Housing First” model to prevent homelessness. SafeHome Philadelphia

    3. Background SafeHome Philadelphia is a work-in-progress created to build evidence of the efficacy of “Housing First” for all Philadelphians in housing crises -- to convert public investment from temporary to permanent housing. SafeHome Philadelphia

    4. Eligibility Core Value is that Housing is A Human Right 1) Families only in this first phase because they have safety net 2) Housing Crisis w/ Homelessness as a Likely Outcome 3) Ability to pay forward rent SafeHome Philadelphia

    5. Funding Privately funded through blood, sweat & tears & some fun (46 kindergarteners & businessmen in boxes) which provides flexibility to build evidence SafeHome Philadelphia

    6. Program Components Housing Voluntary Partnership: Home Based Supports & Community Links Evaluation Process SafeHome Philadelphia

    7. Telephone Screen Housing or Partner Advocate: Description of situation Ballpark information income SafeHome Philadelphia

    8. Site Visit As soon as possible, Housing Advocate visits current housing to confirm crisis and family’s immediate options SafeHome Philadelphia

    9. Family Interviews with Advocates Explore strengths-based partnership to obtain housing and increase resources to build stability Assemble needed documentation Determine next steps SafeHome Philadelphia

    10. Staff Case review Carefully review documentation to identify hidden bombs Identify/resolve unaddressed or undocumented matters SafeHome Philadelphia

    11. Voluntary Partnership Agreement dreams & aspirations non-binding action plan and description of what SafeHome offers SafeHome Philadelphia

    12. Housing determine rent ceiling “ school locations “ neighborhood CHOICE not placement negotiate lease terms with landlord lease reviewed & signed tenant rights & responsibilities SafeHome Philadelphia

    13. Voluntary Home-Based Support making a house a home: furnishings help social visits : take out for meal or takeout relaxation techniques training differentiate advocates from past “institutional” experiences provide transportation to get groceries build trust: encourage initiative SafeHome Philadelphia

    14. CHALLENGES Sticking to core belief: Housing is a Human Right Honest, we are not the cops How many phone numbers can you have before your brain blows up? The realities of their lives: work, children, loves vs. our good intentions Stop trying to herd cats SafeHome Philadelphia

    15. COST City of Philadelphia spends $35,000 a year for a family in shelter SafeHome Philadelphia makes a one time investment of $4,000 to house a family (one half is direct housing assistance; the other half is staff support) SafeHome Philadelphia

    16. EVALUATION Stability: rent payments & tenancy over time Change in children’s health and education Change in adult’s well being SafeHome Philadelphia

    17. Summary: 61 Families 40% have previous shelter experience 75-80% have employment income 4+ is average family size 50% have graduated high school 95% are native Philadelphians Average rent: $598 Average income: $1616 Housing crises were unsafe conditions, overcrowding, violence, “illegal” resident in subsidized housing: only 2 of 61 families had eviction notices In second cohort, 91% are stable; in first cohort, no one became homeless, but incarceration and relapse and one eviction occurred: 79% remain housed All families but those on some form of cash assistance have increased income All families had the choice of at least 2 new homes – over 160 decent, affordable,,safe private housing was found SafeHome Philadelphia

    18. SafeHome Philadelphia the mission-achieving creation of the Philadelphia Committee to END Homelessness Phyllis Ryan Jackson 215-232-2303 SafeHome Philadelphia