Ms. Elizabeth Caruso
3 May 2016
Is preventing and ending homelessness impossible?
The idea of ending homelessness forever, seems to always rub people the wrong
way. Most people see it as an impossible task that will take years and years to
accomplish. With more than 600,000 people living on the street on any given night in
the U.S., it does seem like a difficult task, but it isn’t impossible (General Homelessness
Facts). From my research for my synthesis paper I came to the conclusion thatThis is
because there are programs out there that can help the homeless population find
permanent housing, which and I incorporated my thoughts and findings into a blog so
that I could better share my ideas with others.
This blog is meant I created this blog for anyone who wants to know more about
what’s going on in the world around them or simply for those who for those who simply
want to help the homeless get off the streets. My inspiration for the name of my blog,
“Helping Progress” came from the fact that there is “Help In Progress” for helping to get
the homeless population off the streets. In my blog, “Helping Progress”Throughout my
blog I discuss the different kinds of programs out there that are available to the
homeless population. These programs are designed to prevent and end homelessness
and I believe they are making an impact great progress. A good impact that is. This
progress is discussed in my blog through an article titled (insert title). Here I talk about
how far ending homelessness has come since these programs have been implemented.
One of these programs is a “recovery-oriented approach to ending homelessness
that centers on quickly moving people experiencing homelessness into permanent
housing” and then working on their underlying issues like mental illness or substance
abuse (Housing First). This approach goes by the name of is called Housing First. The
name pretty much says it all because Tthe number one priority of this program is to get
people off the streets and into a homes as fast as possible. A shining example of how
the Housing First program has flourished takes place in Utah. Utah initiated the Housing
First program in 2005 and in just a less than a decade “the state has reduced the
number of people living on the streets by almost 75%” (Bertrand). Although Utah is one
of the states you hear most about, there are many other success stories where the
Housing First program has successfully helped the homeless. I think this approach the
Housing First approach of focusing on people’s needs rather than their problems is
good because it doesn’t exclude people with mental illnesses or substance abuse
issues like previous approaches did. Previous approaches took the stance of putting the
homeless through therapy or rehab before trying to place them into permanent housing.
This idea The new approach takes into account that the fact that in order for people to
flourish they but have must have a stable living arrangement setup first and then they
can work on their underlying issues. In my blog I stateI state in my blog that this is the
best option because people can’t truly get back on their feet if they don’t have a place to
stay at night. It adds stress to their already stressful life if they have to worry about
where they are going to go to find a warm place to sleep for that night.
In Boulder, Colorado there were mixed emotions about the Housing First
program. when in November of 2014 the first apartment complex under this program
was opened In November of 2014 Boulder’s first apartment complex was opened under
this programs initiative. Many people were opposed to this complex being opened in
their neighborhood because they believed it would be a “magnet for the kind of
unsavory behavior [that] already afflicted the area due to the presence” of the homeless
shelter already established in their neighborhood (Meltzer). I find this stereotypical
because not everyone who’s homeless is bound to commit “unsavory behavior” like
these people were inclined to believe. After a year went by there were no complaints
comingthere had been no police calls or reported complaints from the neighbors. and
one person One neighbor in particular, Gail Promboin, who had previously opposed the
initiative said she was “partially wrong” for believing the program would fail (Meltzer).
The people of Boulder had made an assumption that all homeless people are were
either drug addicts or mentally unstable. This is the kind of mindset that needs to be
changed in order to end homelessness. My blog includes ways in which this mindset
can be changed. Starting with things that an ordinary, everyday person can do to help
out. Things such as donating money, clothing, food, time, and toys. The most important
thing that people can do it to become aware of the facts. The facts are that tThe old way
of helping people find homes was to fix their underlying problems first and then give
them housing. This didn’t always work, so Housing First was implemented. That’s why
my blog was created, to help spread the word of what Housing First is and all the good
it can do.In order to help spread the word of what kind of helpful programs are out there
I created a blog for my generalized piece.
Since I’m talking about an important topic, which requires a certain serious
attitude when reading, I decided to go the professional route when constructing my blog.
By making the layout easy to follow and keeping the color scheme simple my blog
becomes more aesthetically credible. If I had added random quotes or bright colors my
blog might have been perceived in a way that I didn’t want. The layout is easy to follow
with tags on each post to help the reader find specific articles. The whole idea of my
product was to interact with others and help increase their knowledge on the issue of
homelessness, so I included a comments bar on my page. I wanted This is so whoever
reads my page to will feel free to express their opinions or ask questions about anything
that what I’ve written.
“Helping Progress”, Mmy blog, touches on the point that the Housing First
program not only reduced the percentage of people living on the streets or in
sheltershomeless population, but it also saved the taxpayer’s money. Homeless
peopleness costs taxpayers a lot of money because of shelter and hospital costs.
Housing First, which is Permanent supportive housing, saved Denver “$15,733 per year
per person in public costs for shelter, criminal justice, health care, [and] emergency
room [...] costs” (Snyder). I think that if more people knew that helping to fix the solution
now would save them money in the long run, then they would be more inclined to
donate their money or time. Not only did Denver save money when they implemented
the Housing First program, but so did Utah.The same great results were seen in Utah.
The number of homeless people in Utah not only decreased, but “Utah [also] found that
giving people supportive housing cost the system about half as much as leaving the
homeless to live on the street” (Carrier). If people won’t help out of the kindness of their
hearts, then I think they will when they hear that Housing First helps save money. That’s
why I included a page for donations in my blog. I feel, along with thousands of others,
that the more awareness that this cause gets the more donations it will receive.s too.
Some people like to donate money to a specific charity, so they know exactly where and
what their money is going to, so I also included a section where donations to specific
charities is available. This way more people are likely to give money., so that way
people are more inclined to give.
The best way to approach a problem and fix it is to know your options and that’s
what I hope my blog is able to do. Spreading knowledge of Housing First and informing
people of how it workshelps will prove useful in preventing and ending homelessness
forever, so no, I don’t think it’s not an impossible task.
New Works Cited
"General Homelessness Facts." Homelessness Facts & Statistics. N.d. Web. 10 Apr.
"Housing First." Housing First. N.d. Web. 09 Apr. 2016.
Bertrand, Natasha. "Utah Found a Brilliantly Effective Solution for Homelessness.”
Business Insider. Business Insider, Inc, 19 Feb. 2015. Web. 12
Meltzer, Erica. “Few Problems in Housing-first Facility’s Inaugural Year.” The Denver Post.
02 Apr. 2016. Web. 12 Apr. 2016
Snyder, Kaitlyn. "Study Data Show That Housing Chronically Homeless People Saves
Money, Lives." National Alliance to End Homelessness. 30 June 2015.
Original Works Cited
Carrier, Scott. “Room for Improvement.” Mother Jones. Mother Jones and the
Foundation for National Progress. March 2015. Web. 17 Feb, 2016.