Mission: Rallying the community to end homelessness.
The Homeless Alliance is a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the system of care for the homeless in Oklahoma City through collaboration with government, faith-based and nonprofit service providers. The ultimate goal of the Homeless Alliance is to rally our community to end long-term homelessness in Oklahoma City by both preventing homelessness and increasing the supply of affordable and permanent supportive housing to move those who are currently homeless back into housing.
Since launching in 2004, the Homeless Alliance has developed the software infrastructure used by more than 30 homeless-serving agencies to track service utilization and measure outcomes, coordinated community response to emerging homeless issues, conducted research and reviewed national best practices to bring new initiatives to Oklahoma, and built the WestTown Homeless Resources Campus. The campus includes a “one-stop shop” for social services with multiple agencies located on site and the City’s only Day Shelter which serves more than 250 guests daily. The Homeless Alliance contracts with City Care, Inc. to operate the Day Shelter.
The Homeless Alliance operates the WestTown Homeless Resources Campus. The campus includes a “one-stop shop” for social services with multiple agencies located on site and the City’s only Day Shelter. The Homeless Alliance contracts with City Care, Inc. to operate the Day Shelter.
The Day Shelter provides services to an average of 275 guests per day. Services include breakfast and lunch, showers, telephones and computers. In addition, guests at the day shelter have access to a variety of services from community agencies to assist guests with ending their homelessness: for example mental health and substance abuse treatment, primary healthcare, veterans services, budgeting support, case management, job training and placement. The Day Shelter also offers a dog kennel.
fresh stART, a program of the Homeless Alliance and City Care, is an art program that is operated at the Day Shelter designed to provide people experiencing homelessness in Oklahoma City with a supportive environment for creating art. Similar art programs in regional cities have shown positive results. In addition to providing a potential source of income, open studio art programs enable people experiencing homelessness to express themselves creatively, manage emotional issues, develop social skills through positive interaction with a peer group, confidence and skills transferable to employment.
In addition to operating the Westtown campus, the Homeless Alliance also operates a housing program for homeless families with children and is coordinating the efforts of more than 40 partner agencies through the Journey Home OKC program. Journey Home OKC is a community-wide initiative to house the most medically-vulnerable, unsheltered people experiencing chronic homelessness. With the goal of housing 85 people in the first year, the group exceeded expectations by housing more than 230. The group has now housed more than 750 people and has expanded their goal by joining a national effort to house all homeless veterans and chronically homeless people by the end of 2016.
Recently, the Homeless Alliance opened 20 single room occupancy apartments on their Westtown Homeless Resource Campus to house veterans and people who aren't quite ready for a traditional rental property environment. Having these units as an option will enable us to slowly transition some of these individuals back into the community. Just another important tool as we seek to end homelessness.