Couch-surfing, living in a motel, facing eviction...
Lots of situations can lead to becoming homeless, and we believe that addressing those situations can stop homelessness before it begins. To that end our Homeless Prevention Outreach Advocate works with households at risk of becoming homelessness and connects them with services and resources that can help keep them housed.
When a family or individual first contacts our Prevention Outreach Advocate—by phone or in person—our Advocate gathers their basic information and learns the details of their situation. Based on the client’s situation, the Prevention Advocate determines the most appropriate way to address the housing instability. For some clients, providing referral information to agencies such as energy assistance, food pantries, and general assistance is adequate. For others the Advocate needs to meet with the client to more thoroughly discuss barriers to housing stability and help establish an action plan based on the client’s needs and personal motivations. Such plans often include mediating with landlords to set up payment installments or helping secure financial support from other agencies. The Adcovate often provides transport to appointments and meets with area landlords frequently to address housing instability.
In 2016 the most-reported situation of near-homelessness was living doubled up.
Regardless the complexity of the client’s needs, the Prevention Advocate follows up with the client to see how they are coming in obtaining housing stability. If a client’s housing situation has become stable, they are formally exited from the program but can contact the Prevention Advocate if needed in the future. For those still facing housing instability, the Advocate continues to work with them until they are stably housed in some form, whether that’s the same or different housing.
95% of the clients who provided program exit information in 2016 were stably housed.
The Outreach Prevention Advocate has office hours at locations throughout Linn County, including the Downtown Library, the Southeast Linn County Community Center, and Waypoint Housing Services. She also often visits food pantries, meal sites, and clothing closets.
Homeless Prevention is:
Homeless Prevention includes: