Since September 2011, the Foundation has contracted with Abt Associates to evaluate its Chronic Homelessness Initiative strategy. This interactive web platform houses the Evaluation Team’s annual and other reports. As additional reports are developed and released, they will be added to this site.
The Abt evaluation team focuses on the key areas depicted in the graphic below. Use the graphic to navigate these topics and dive deeper into the progress of the Initiative and the Foundation’s many community partners.
Since 2010, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation has been working on addressing homelessness in Los Angeles through its Chronic Homelessness Initiative strategy. Central to this Initiative is the idea that chronic homelessness can be eliminated through the successful creation and operation of permanent supportive housing (PSH), when those most vulnerable (people who are chronically homeless or homeless and medically fragile) can access and remain housed in those units. Starting in September 2011, the Foundation contracted with Abt Associates to evaluate its Initiative, with the goal of answering the overarching question: Is the Chronic Homelessness Initiative an effective strategy to end and prevent chronic homelessness in Los Angeles (LA) County?
Since 2010, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation has been working on addressing homelessness in Los Angeles through its Chronic Homelessness Initiative strategy. Central to this Initiative is the idea that chronic homelessness can be eliminated through the successful creation and operation of permanent supportive housing (PSH), when those most vulnerable (people who are chronically homeless or homeless and medically fragile) can access and remain housed in those units. In September 2011, the Foundation contracted with Abt Associates to evaluate its Initiative, with the goal of answering the overarching question: Is the Chronic Homelessness Initiative an effective strategy to end and prevent chronic homelessness in Los Angeles (LA) County?
During Phase I of the Chronic Homelessness Initiative, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation supported strategic education and advocacy with local, state, and federal public officials through several of its grantees and partnerships, including direct engagement and support to the United Way’s “Home For Good” partnership to end homelessness. As the Initiative entered Phase II, the community’s momentum including efforts from Home For Good and community partners culminated in the development and adoption of joint City and County homeless strategies and significant ballot measures to fund them.
The population of people experiencing chronic homelessness in Los Angeles is larger than in past years and appears to be growing. In order to see dramatic reductions, significantly more permanent supportive housing resources are needed to house those already chronically homeless as well as those at-risk of chronic homelessness. Over the next ten years, Proposition HHH, Measure H, No Place Like Home, and other new public funding streams give LA the opportunity to significantly scale up housing development and supportive services. To achieve the full impact of this local funding, supportive housing developers will also need to rely on federal funding for project-based rent subsidies and additional capital investments that are tied to federal policy (e.g. Low Income Housing Tax Credits), as well as Medicaid financing for health care and supportive services in housing.
A countywide prioritization system is a universal assessment and prioritization approach to providing homeless assistance. This simply means that every person experiencing homelessness is assessed and prioritized for access to housing and services based on a standardized set of criteria and identified level of need. The idea is that the most intensive resources are reserved for the people who need the most help, and those with limited needs are offered only nominal help to resolve their homeless experience.
The impact of additional people becoming chronically homeless has a huge impact on the pace of ending chronic homelessness. In Phase I, the focus of the Initiative was to prioritize individuals experiencing chronic homelessness for PSH and where possible move people out of homelessness quickly and efficiently, to prevent their homelessness from becoming chronic. But rising inflow into chronic homelessness makes clear that preventing people from staying on the streets for long periods of time is also critical. Inflow into chronic homelessness is different from inflow into homelessness overall, and there is little research or best practices in targeting resources to individuals most likely to fall into chronic homelessness. During Phase II, the Foundation has set a goal only to understand the issue and potential solutions more fully at this stage.
Over the past six years the Los Angeles community has made substantial progress in furthering support for and prioritizing permanent supportive housing (PSH) as a solution to chronic homelessness. Specifically, over the past year, there have been great efforts around the community to obtain dedicated funding for supporting the community’s homeless initiatives, developing new PSH units, and scaling up flexible programs to house highly vulnerable persons. Now that there is significant funding through Proposition HHH and Measure H to support the work needed to combat homelessness, political will, and public will, the community has more opportunity than ever to drive change towards ending and preventing chronic homelessness. As the community and the Foundation continue to move forward with Phase II of the Chronic Homelessness Initiative, we recommend examining the following opportunities, collected from throughout this report.
For questions about the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation’s Chronic Homelessness Initiative, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For questions about Abt Associates’ evaluation efforts or this website, please contact ChronicHomelessnessInitiative@abtassoc.com