THHI is working with several homeless outreach staff from various agencies to develop and implement a Coordinated Outreach process for the Tampa-Hillsborough County CoC (including Tampa, Temple Terrace, Plant City, and unincorporated Hillsborough County).
Benefits of Coordinated Outreach
There are benefits to this approach for homeless individuals and the agency’s participating in coordinated outreach.
Homeless people benefit through:
- More frequent interaction by appropriate staff
- VI – SPDAT assessment and placement on the appropriate housing list
- A faster path to shelter and housing
- Access to medical and housing staff in the field
Outreach Staff and Agencies benefit through:
- Greater community cooperation
- Collaboration on client options
- Assistance in locating clients when housing opportunities become available
- Help with difficult to places client
- Support in outreach efforts across sub-populations
- Access to new encampments in both urban and rural areas
Proposed Coordinated Outreach Process
Below is the proposed coordinated outreach process being discussed by the coordinated outreach work group:
The Coordinated Outreach process will consist of three types of outreach teams which will meet regularly to coordinate countywide outreach efforts.
1. Homeless Outreach and Treatment (HOT) Teams
2. Partnerships for Ideal Engagement (PIE) Teams
3. Individual Agency Efforts
The purpose of the HOT Team is to ensure that everyone in the community’s larger encampments are being engaged by the appropriate outreach personnel. Members of the HOT Team will be comprised of existing outreach efforts and include a majority of the following personnel when conducting outreach. The exact size of the HOT Team should be proportionate to the size of the encampment.
- Mental Health & Substance Use Professional
- Health Care Professionals
- Veteran Service Providers
- Law Enforcement
- Housing Specialists (for Individuals & Families)
- Volunteers, Peers, & Students
The HOT Team will go out at least monthly and target large encampments. The efforts of the HOT Team will focus on:
- Engaging the Homeless Community
- Conducting VI-SPDAT to assess Vulnerability
- Assisting with the transition from the street into the following as quickly as possible
- Emergency Shelter
- Transitional Housing
- Bridge Housing
- Permanent Supportive Housing
- Finding Individuals and Families (that remain on the street) once housing is available
The purpose of the PIE Team is to encourage natural partnerships to engage smaller encampments. PIE Teams will be assigned a specific geography, identify encampment needs, and participate on the HOT Team. The PIE Teams will go out at least weekly (if not daily)their efforts will focus on smaller encampments but will have the same focus as the HOT Team, however, the PIE Team will also identify the locations of the larger encampment for the HOT Team to engage and help Coordinate access to the encampments. The PIE Team will have the same responsibilities as the HOT Team and will additionally:
- Identify Larger Encampments for the HOT Team
- Participate in the monthly meetings
- Contribute personnel when the HOT Team goes out to the street and encampments
Individual Agency Efforts
Individual Agency Efforts will continue in the community when the formation of PIE Teams is not possible due to logistics. The Individual Agency Efforts will be required to do everything that the PIE Teams are responsible for.
All outreach programs in the entirety of the county will need to have a representative participate in the Coordinated Outreach Forum. This will include monthly coordination meetings, participation on the HOT Team, and use of the VI-SPDAT in the field.
If you or your agency is interested in being part of the Coordinated Outreach effort, please contact us.