July 2018
Dear friends,

We at CCEH take the "coalition" in our name seriously. Change truly happens when we work together towards our shared goal of ending homelessness in our state.

This newsletter highlights partnerships that continue to develop as we work smarter - not just harder. CCEH is constantly listening to providers, through learning collabratives and community meetings, to understand your challenges, and to provide solutions, trainings, and support for the partnerships that empower you in your work. 

As we continue our work together with the resources available, we are eager to keep sharing best practices, and forging new partnership so that we can advance our shared mission to end homelessness. 
Lisa Tepper Bates
Executive Director
Shelter Diversion
Official Definition of "Shelter Diversion" for Connecticut
The Department of Housing, along with CCEH, state providers, and the Reaching Home campaign, have developed an official definition of “shelter diversion”  for the entire state of Connecticut. 

Shelter diversion is the effort to divert to a housing solution a client (individual or family) who would otherwise be literally homeless and require entry to emergency shelter. The intent of developing this definition is to provide clarity for frontline workers and leadership, alike, regarding the timeframe and recommended approach for shelter diversion in Connecticut.
HMIS Diversion Projects
Diversion projects are available to be used in Connecticut's Homelessness Management Information System (HMIS) which will allow organizations to see the impact of their diversion projects on the clients they serve. Organizations will be able to follow clients, see the funds expended by the project, and track their outcomes. View the webinar explaining this process . If you are interested in setting up a diversion project in HMIS or if there are technical questions or concerns, please email the CT HMIS Help Desk at help@nutmegit.com.
Support for Emergency Shelters to
Understand Data in HMIS
Seven of Connecticut's Hartford area emergency shelters have been meeting bi-monthly in the form of an "Emergency Shelter Learning Collaborative" facilitated by CCEH and Kay Moshier McDivitt from the National Alliance to End Homelessness. The goal of this collaborative is to share best practices and develop excellence in implementing housing first, low barrier, and harm reduction principles. Part of the work has also been to utilize specific metrics to track performance measures such as length of time homeless and housing outcomes. Through this learning process, the group identified a need to understand data reporting through the state's Homelessness Management Information System (HMIS).

In response to this need, Jackie Janosko and Brian Roccapriore from the CCEH data team provided a free, in-person training in June open to all shelter providers in Connecticut. The training provided background information on the HMIS system and detailed instruction on how providers can run reports and extract specific data on their emergency shelters. The monthly metrics form created by the National Alliance to End Homelessness was also reviewed.

This training is now available for the benefit of all shelters in the form of a recorded webinar.
Animals in Shelters
Shelter providers often encounter people arriving at the shelter with animals, whether it is a pet, emotional support animal, or service animal. The Fair Housing Act (FHA), Connecticut Human Rights Act (CHRA), Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Section 504), and Americans’ with Disabilities Act (ADA) all require shelter providers to make reasonable accommodations for individuals with disabilities presenting with assistance animals. It is the shelter provider’s responsibility to know the laws applicable to their shelter.

New Resources Available!
In order to help providers better understand how to serve clients with these three categories of animals, CCEH, in partnership with the Connecticut Fair Housing Center, held a training and developed resources to assist shelter staff in understanding the laws and caring for those who need the support of animals through their stay in shelter.
Join the CCEH Team
"Health & Homeless System Liaison"
CCEH is proud to announce a unique partnership with the Community Health Center Association of Connecticut (CHCACT) to host a Service to Improve Community Health (STICH) AmeriCorps member who will liaise between the state's homeless response system and community health centers.

The STICH AmeriCorps member will complete their service at CCEH as the “Health & Homeless System Liaison” full-time for a 10 month commitment beginning in September of 2018. Please view the STICH flyer for specific details about this AmeriCorps position including the living allowance, educational award, and more. AmeriCorps is a federally funded program through the Corporation for National and Community Service. 
CCEH is seeking candidates for this position who are interested in the organization’s efforts to build our state's homeless response system through partnerships and trainings with an emphasis on working with school-based health centers around youth homelessness. This is a new position that is under development and may change as local needs are identified further. The ideal candidate would be a strong problem solver, flexible, can easily build and maintain relationships, and is a self-starter with a high work ethic. Preference will be given to candidates with a background in health and/or homelessness in Connecticut.  

Visit CCEH's website to learn more about this position and how to apply.
Connecticut's Balance of State Continuum of Care
2018 RFP - Domestic Violence Bonus Funds
Each year CT BOS CoC competes with other CoCs across the country to secure federal funds to help end homelessness through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Continuum of Care (CoC) program. This year, in addition to the usual funding awarded through this process, HUD has made up to $50 million available nationally to fund Domestic Violence Bonus projects (DV Bonus). The CT BOS CoC is eligible to apply for approximately $1.3 million in DV Bonus Funds. The CT BOS CoC is seeking DV Bonus applications for projects dedicated to serve survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, and human trafficking for inclusion in the CoC’s 2018 application for HUD CoC funds.

Deadline to Apply: 7/23/18
CCEH Staff to Present at National Conference
At the end of July, a few of CCEH's staff will be headed to Washington, D.C. to present and share best practices and strategies Connecticut has developed at the National Alliance to End Homelessness's annual conference.

  • Mimi Haley, Deputy Director, will be presenting during the "Diversion: A System-Wide Strategy to Reduce Entries into Homelessness" and "Building Effective Partnerships: Schools and CoCs Working Together to Support Homeless Students" workshops.

  • Sarah Fox, Director of Advocacy & Community Impact, will be presenting during the "Ending Chronic Homelessness: It's Difficult but Doable" workshop.

  • Brian Roccapriore, Director of Homeless Management Information Systems and Strategic Analysis, will be presenting during the "Working Together: Domestic Violence and Homelessness Services Coordination" workshop.

Registration has closed for this conference, however CCEH staff will summarize highlights from workshops they attend and share these upon their return.
Nonprofits and the Upcoming CT Elections
The stakes are high for community nonprofits this election season. Connecticut will choose a new Governor, constitutional officers, legislature, and some members of our congressional delegation. The leaders elected will shape public policy for the coming years.

The Nonprofit Alliance, a statewide association of nonprofits, is hosting eight Regional Election Briefings, to educate and encourage nonprofit staff, board members, volunteers, advocates and other supporters on ways to ensure candidates hear your voice and the voices of the people you serve.

Visit The Alliance’s 2018 Election Program website to stay connected. To attend a briefing near you, register here or RSVP to jshaw@ctnonprofitalliance.org.

Helping Clients Vote 
More than 500,000 state residents are served through programs such as childcare to counseling to emergency homeless shelters. The majority of these clients of nonprofits are adult U.S. citizens who have the right to vote, but may be hard to reach through traditional voter registration campaigns. Nonprofit human service providers have a unique ability to reach underrepresented communities. Nonprofit providers are well placed to reach eligible voters, to provide them with basic education about their voting rights and how to register, and to encourage them to become informed about electoral choices. Encouraging our clients to register and vote is an important part of supporting them to exercise their voice and self-advocate – just as all citizens should do. 

  • CT Homeless & Voting Q&A - Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill provides guidance regarding issues of residence and voting rights.
  • CT Voter Information - CT Secretary of the State website. 
  • You Don't Need a Home to Vote Campaign - National Coalition for the Homeless - resources and ideas to help overcome the obstacles that prevent people experiencing homelessness from becoming registered voters. 
  • Nonprofit VOTE - A nonpartisan organization that provides resources to help nonprofits integrate voter engagement into their ongoing activities and services.
  • The Nonprofit Alliance - Connecticut statewide association of nonprofits that guides nonprofits through candidate tours of their facilities, holding candidate forums, and providing voter registration resources. 

Upcoming Trainings & Meetings
Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness
(860) 721-7876 |  training@cceh.org  |  www.cceh.org

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