The Road Home

Welcome back to our community

Every few months, we’ll be in touch to share data, local and national research, best practices, and community updates. Please pass along any of your news, as well—we’ll be happy to share it out.

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New Interactive Infographic Tells the Story of Homelessness in Pierce County

Homelessness is a story of housing, income, and behavioral health. But we don't always see these big, structural causes in our day-to-day lives. Pierce County has released a new interactive infographic that tells the story of the causes of—and response to—homelessness in our region. The graphic will be updated monthly to reflect the most recent data.

Click to see our interactive infographic!

Check out the story here.

Evaluation of Coordinated Entry Shows Improvement Over Centralized Intake 

Our Coordinated Entry System (CES) has been up and running for a year and a half! We engaged Focus Strategies to conduct an evaluation of the system’s first six months, and the outcomes are promising. We learned that the system: 

•  Is generally well understood
•  Offers streamlined access to assistance
•  Diverts about 15% of homeless households from the wait list
•  Prioritizes the most vulnerable households for housing referrals
•  Represents an improvement over the old Centralized Intake system

There's always room for improvement. 

Long waits between initial screenings and housing-solutions conversations can limit access to the system. The most vulnerable households aren’t always prioritized for permanent supportive housing. And referrals are sometimes declined without reason. Focus Strategies is in the midst of completing a one-year evaluation with further recommendations, and in the interim, we’re working on addressing these and other gaps. We welcome your ideas for how we can improve in these areas.

Read Focus Strategies' full report here.

Diversion: An Innovative Solution to Homelessness that’s Working in Pierce County

Diversion is a "light-touch" approach to ending homelessness that encourages and helps households come up with their own solutions to housing crises. In a pilot with Building Changes, almost 20% of families experiencing homelessness were diverted from a long wait for a housing referral through the support of this process. Because Diversion doesn't require intensive case management or other system resources, it's quicker and more cost-effective than other approaches, which frees up resources for more families in need. In April, Building Changes released its initial evaluation of the process in Pierce County.


Diversion pilot results

Note: Numbers do not add to 100% due to rounding.

* A successful exit is defined as one of the following safe housing destinations: rental without subsidy; rental with subsidy; or a permanent or temporary shared-living arrangement with family or friends. 

** An unsuccessful exit is defined as the following destinations: unsheltered; in transitional housing or shelter; in jail or hospital.

Learn more about Diversion and read Building Changes' white papers highlighting our work here.

Homeless Housing Program Funding Awards Announced

Pierce County is pleased to announce the awards for the 2018 Homeless Housing Program Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA). View the awards here and the original NOFA here.

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