Ending Homelessness: Outreach Team
Our Outreach Team is available at our Drop-In Center, Monday through Friday, to discuss clients’ needs and assist with referrals. Additionally, our Outreach Team reaches out to clients where they are located: in our parks, our Metro stops, our parking garages. Whatever the client’s needs, we work to form individual strategies to help each client to exit homelessness. As we engage our clients, building trusting relationships with them, we offer food, clothing, access to a staff psychiatrist.
The causes of homelessness are many, and thus, so must be our responses. There is no typical day either on the street or at our Drop-In Center, so we respond with flexibility to each person and his or her challenges. Working with multiple government and nonprofit agencies, we coordinate housing and services for our clients.
Whatever our clients’ needs are, we work with them to find solutions.
Bethesda Cares are strong supporters of the “Housing First” movement, an alternative to the traditional shelter system. Through Housing First, an approach now considered a nationwide best practice, we place people, regardless of their physical or mental challenges, into permanent housing. We then bring supportive services to them, helping them cope with their issues from that stable platform. We believe coping with such challenges are not precursors to housing; rather, they will flow from the safety and stability that comes from having a permanent home in the first place.
Click here for a piece from The New Yorker as to why this approach makes financial sense, too.