We need your input as we prepare for the 2015 Homeless/At-Risk Youth Count, which will take place the last week of January 2015. We know that homeless youth often try NOT to be found, which makes it difficult to get an accurate count and understanding of this population’s needs.
Help us out by completing our survey, and sharing the survey broadly, so that we hear from many people who connect with youth. Click below to take the short survey:
A key recommendation from the Zero 2016 campaign is that CoCs conduct a registry week, and they recommend combining it with the Point-in-time (PIT) Count. While registry is a component of the Zero 2016 campaign, which Hampden County is participating in, it is also a best practice, recommended for all CoCs–so don’t stop reading if you are in Hampshire, Franklin or Berkshire Counties!
The purpose of a registry week is to gather not just numbers, but actionable information about the people who are homeless in our community. During the PIT count, we are connecting with every homeless person that we can find to count them and identify whether they are part of several subpopulations we count. By conducting a registry, we will not only know how many, but we will also know who they are and what their needs are.
As the 100,000 Homes campaign points out:
Data gathered through the VI will enable your community to prioritize people for housing placement and help you build support for your efforts by framing homelessness accurately as a life-or-death public health emergency. It will also help your community know all the people experiencing homelessness on your streets, including many people who have opted out or cannot meet the demands of your shelter system. Research from Philadelphia found that nearly 30% of people who died on the streets were unknown to the local shelter system, all the more reason to know everyone by name and find them even if they don’t seek you out.
We will be talking about including a registry as part of the 2015 PIT count at this week’s Individual Services meeting–Thursday, December 4, 10:30 to noon at the Northampton Senior Center. Please join us if you are interested in learning more.
For background, review the 100,000 Homes Campaign Registry Week Integration Toolkit.
Massachusetts is conducting its second annual count of youth who are homeless or unstably housed. The CoCs are coordinating the count, which will take place January 28–February 3, 2015.
It takes lots of contacts to reach youth throughout our region, especially since many youth do not access homeless service providers. To get to as many youth as possible, we need lots of partners.
Can you help us?
As a first step, please tell us what you know and what you might be willing to do. Start by filling out this survey, and then forward the survey to everyone you know who works with youth.
Also, if you are in Hampden County, connect with us for regular updates. Visit our website HampdenYouthCount.wordpress.com and follow us on Twitter @HampdenYouth.
We had our initial orientation call this week for the Ready for Zero campaign.,,gearing up for a big launch in January. A key first task we will accomplish during January through March 2015 will be using data to understand how many veterans and chronic homeless people we need to house each month in order to hit the target of 0 homeless veterans by the end of 2015 and 0 chronically homeless individuals by the end of 2016.
Here we go!