Human-centered design, fueled by conversations with people with lived experience, tell us that people already know what they need/want. Compared to brick and mortar shelter and housing providers, Street Outreach teams are often beginning work with a client in a very different space. Immediate, basic needs are often given closer attention than considerations about homeless history or prioritization scores. A solution is needed that is tailored to Outreach-specific workflows and service delivery.
Within a single Continuum of Care (CoC) or community, Street Outreach teams often have different funders, coverage areas, services they provide, and operating hours.
- How do we make sure we aren’t sending multiple teams to the same area for outreach?
- How can we coordinate efforts across homeless service agencies, local governments, the faith community, and private individuals?
First responders need to know who to contact, for example, to divert sending a person to jail or the ER, but may have difficulty discovering:
- Which team is covering my area tonight?
- Who has compression socks for people with diabetes?
- Can I send a referral to this specific service provider?
- Are there any available beds nearby for the 18-year-old I’m working with?
While supporting people’s immediate needs, Street Outreach contacts are vital for documenting homeless history—which goes a long way towards establishing chronicity and, oftentimes, eligibility for prioritized housing placements. Homeless history is often not as well-documented for persons experiencing homelessness on the streets, compared to persons who engage the sheltered system.
- How can we quantify these Street Outreach interactions to document their homeless status and history?
- How can we reduce the number of people experiencing unsheltered homelessness?
Provide coordinated care with the aid of features including:
- Real-time data capture of geospatial survey data (who, what, when, and where)
- Custom surveys to assess encampment status, identify needs, and track services
- Street Outreach Team management:
- Assign teams to specific regions and areas
- Log observations about people that cannot be engaged
- Track locations of encampments, pictures, and notes
- Person-specific surveys to collect information on contacts and engagement
- Recorded in real-time and will be
- Able to be used to support a person’s chronic homeless status
- ID card scanning to support rapid intake on the streets or in shelter
- Optional ability to integrate facial recognition tech to quickly identify a person
- Review details of past interactions by any member of the navigation team
- Follow ups and alerts inform the navigator of any actions that need to be taken