In partnership, Journey Home, the City of Hartford and Imagineers have implemented an unprecedented new preference in the City’s Housing Choice Voucher Program (formerly known as Section 8). This preference is intended to create more affordable housing for those experiencing chronic homelessness (those with long term homelessness who also have disabilities). As the entity that maintains the By Name List of individuals experiencing homelessness in our region, and the entity that convenes all of the Coordinated Access Network agencies, Journey Home was perfectly situated to serve as the liaison between homeless service providers and Imagineers in the coordination of this program. Homeless services providers are offering those who have been in Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) for many years (and who were previously chronically homeless), the chance to “move on” and become more independent through this program. This creates openings in the PSH programs that can then be offered to our chronically homeless individuals who benefit from the intensive support services attached to these programs.
In only three months, the initial result of this model has the potential to reduce chronic homelessness by 33%. The City of Hartford has now paved the way using this model and is helping us reach our goal of ending chronic homelessness in our community. It is this sort of innovative thinking that has created great costeffectiveness and has allowed us to become a city that is leading the nation in creative solutions to homelessness. As we work towards our Zero 2016 goal of ending chronic homelessness by the end of this year we are thrilled to have the City of Hartford and Imagineers make such a huge commitment to helping us get there!