a place to call home
Families Together follows national Best Practices for the Housing First model with a children first focus. Our work is designed to reduce the number of nights a child is homeless by first helping the family get into a safe, affordable home and then wrapping them with the intensive coaching and supportive services they need to become self-sufficient and break the cycle of homelessness.
We work in collaboration with other service providers, businesses, faith groups, our neighbors, and our government to develop and implement solutions that have long-term, maximum collective impact.
SHORT-TERM FAMILY HOUSING: When a permanent home is not immediately available, Families Together provides emergency relief for children and their families who might otherwise be forced to separate without our help. We do this by welcoming families into one of our six private 3-bedroom apartments and connecting them with one of our Mentor Advocates. Families live at no cost in these units while they save money and work to overcome barriers such as domestic violence, unemployment and poor credit. The goal of this program is to help each family move into a permanent home in the community within 30-60 days.
PERMANENT HOUSING PLACEMENT: Whether a family is staying in a partnering shelter, one of our short-term apartments, or living in a low-cost motel or in a car, the main focus for Families Together is to get them into a home for good. We work with families to identify and overcome obstacles that are causing a family to be homeless. Our Mentor Advocates help families develop budgets and locate housing that fits within their income, is near the child’s school and otherwise meets their household needs. FT provides temporary rental and utilities assistance and links to landlords in our community. We inspect every home to ensure its safety and we sign an Open Communication. We inspect every home to ensure its safety and we sign an Open Communication Agreement with the landlord and family so that we can intervene and address problems before they escalate. Once in a permanent home, the family continues to work with their Mentor Advocate for up to a year to help navigate the new path to independence. In 8 out of 10 placements, families successfully graduate by attaining a year of holding a lease in their own name.
Working from a place of deep compassion and high-level skill, additional services include:
Temporary rental and utilities assistance – a 1-3 month investment in our community’s children with enormous long-term savings to society.
Professional mentoring – A dedicated Mentor Advocate counsels each family for up to a year and makes all the difference to their success.
Children’s Enrichment – After school and summer programming helps children in our short-term housing overcome the trauma of homelessness and maintain academic progress.
Life Skills Training – Bi-weekly workshops on topics such as better money management habits and landlord-tenant rights and responsibilities increase each family’s capacity to become self-sufficient.
Referrals and Resources – Connections to critical community resources such as job training, healthcare, food, clothing, transportation, and childcare.