Unaccompanied Homeless Youth Meeting Minutes – 6/15/18
In attendance: Emily English, Gandara Center, Rosemary Fiedler, Holyoke Community College, Lisa Goldsmith, DIAL/SELF, Ann Lentini, Domus, Inc., Gerry McCafferty, City of Springfield, Jean Rogers, CHD, Pamela Schwartz, Network
Homelessness Resource Fair Debrief:
Summary of comments and brainstorm: In the big picture, a success – such an amazing turn-out with great energy. In the smaller picture, it was too many people (a good problem!) to accomplish the most of what we want to accomplish (true resource sharing, a chance to dialogue and get to all the tables, a chance to get trained on sub-topics).
Our brainstorm landed us on the consensus recommendation that we should separate out the actual resource fair and tabling from the trainings. Have the resource fair be JUST that – 2 hours of visiting tables and having conversation – and then have discrete trainings throughout the year on the range of topics offered at the fair. This way, people are not being forced to choose among competing topics AND we can afford to give each topic the time it deserves based on the content and complexity (as opposed to based on fitting in the flow of other workshops). Pamela will take this suggestion to the other committees and report back.
New youth housing units in Northampton:
DIAL/SELF is managing these units. For the pre-application form click here and for the brochure click here.
MANY learning collaborative:
MANY is the Mid-Atlantic Network for Youth – a national trade organization for runaway/homeless youth. It is sponsoring a series of best practices phone/web meetings starting this Wed. Our Committee members are able to participate (thanks to DIAL/SELF for leveraging their membership!). The first call is this Wed. We will stay posted.
Update on State Plan to End Homelessness: The report has been issued; the Commission is now focused on hiring an executive director.
FY19 State Budget update: The budget is now in Conference Committee. The Senate budget proposed funding at $3.3 million, the highest by far (House at $1m, Gov. at $2m). We are calling our legislators and will keep everyone posted.
Evaluation of FY18 and Western MA youth homelessness: The group agreed that it would be useful to review this past year around both outcomes and the factors influencing those outcomes, e.g., the funding loss and the consequence to young adults’ engagement with services. The groups will also review the basic indicators of:
# on wait list
length of stay
returns to homelessness
We will exchange reports and discuss at our next meeting.
Gander’s Youth Impact Center at 41 Taylor Street in Springfield: Fantastic opening; fantastic resource for young people. Everyone should visit!
Next meeting date:
August 8 9 am – 10:30 am, Frost Building, Room 309, HCC