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Private sectors, government work together to seek solutions for homelessness in LA

English.news.cn   2013-07-13 09:15:50            

LOS ANGELES, July 12 (Xinhua) -- Leaders from non-profit organizations and business sections Friday joined government agencies in seeking solutions to the serious problem of homelessness in Los Angeles County.

Los Angeles is considered to be the homeless capital of the United States. According to the Los Angeles Homelessness Services Authority, there are 58,423 homeless people in 2013 in Los Angeles County which has 88 cities, compared to 50,214 in 2011, or a 16 percent increase.

More than 300 non-profit, government, philanthropic and business leaders attended Friday's summit meeting held by the Home For Good organization in Los Angeles to assess new data on chronic and veteran homelessness in Los Angeles County, outline new strategies, and agree on the resources needed to end homelessness for these populations.

Barbara Poppe, executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, urged the Home For Good partners to stay the course and remain relentlessly focused on data analysis and systems change.

The event marked the halfway point of Home For Good's five-year plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness in Los Angeles County by 2016 - one of the nation's largest, most collaborative efforts to combat the most extreme form of poverty.

The discussion centered on new data showing that, during the next two-and-a-half years, L.A. County will need to house approximately 53,000 chronically homeless individuals and homeless veterans.

Home For Good leadership called on its many partners to dedicate resources - such as subsidies, housing stock, and individual services - in order to effectively meet the community's projected needs.

Building on the success of its new Coordinated Entry System, the group vowed to double the number of chronic and veteran homeless individuals housed each month by the end of the next 100 days, a significant jump in the speed with which the community will move toward its goals.

Signaling a renewed funding commitment, the Home For Good Funders Collaborative announced that it will leverage, for the second year in a row, more than 100 million dollars in public and private funding toward ending chronic and veteran homelessness.

The Home for Good campaign, now in its third year of implementation, is the blueprint developed by the Los Angeles Business Leaders Task Force on Homelessness to end chronic and veteran homelessness in the L.A. region in five years.

The Task Force is a joint initiative of the Greater Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and United Way L.A.

The creation of the Business Leader's Task Force oversees the Home For Good plan which is designed to end homelessness rather than simply manage it by focusing on permanent supportive housing as the first, most critical step on the path to wellness.

Last year marked the second year of the initiative and activities began with the Home For Good Summit.

Since the creation of the Business Leader's Task Force, participating organizations have doubled usage of the Homeless Management Information System database, reduced the time needed to move veterans from the street into housing from 168 to 100 days, and altogether 2,273 chronically homeless individuals have been placed into housing.

In 2012, philanthropic and public sector partners launched the "Home For Good" Funders Collaborative, a first of its kind partnership in Los Angeles.

The collaborative includes 24 public and private funders working together to create a single application process, align priorities, and make funding decisions together, aiding donors to leverage funds for maximum impact and streamlining the application process for local providers.

One million dollars of the funds awarded to Home For Good from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation were used as a challenge grant to collaborative partners and in 2012, this cross-sector effort resulted in 5 million dollars in private funding aligned with 100 million dollars in public resources, for 30 non-profit organizations.

Editor: Fu Peng
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