Individual Services Committee Meeting – November 1, 2010

In Attendance:  Danielle DeBerry, ServiceNet, Dave Havens, Mental Health Association, Janice Humason, Friends of the Homeless, Jay Levy, Elliot CHS-Homeless Services,  Dave Modzelewski, DMH, Maureen Normand, intern, Jerry  Ray, Mental Health Association, Pamela Schwartz, network coordinator, Suzanne Smith, network data analyst

Contract extension updates:

Brien Center original contract to house 6,have housed 5 – towards end of October, housed 1 more – in an apartment; one more is ready to go, trying to find an apartment, will be housed within a week or two – 2 or 3 more engaged with and developing relationships.

ServiceNet – waiting on Winslow Building – will move in 3 individuals (slated to be done by 11/15), all funds will be expended by 12/24/10 – individuals will be moved into SAMHSA grant.

Mental Health Association: housed 10, waiting for an 11th to be housed.  Extension:  to add 6 individuals with 6 units, paying for housing and staffing.  Did a master lease with another landlord in Springfield and during month of October, all 6 units leased up, 4 people moved in, 2 other identified.  Will end up in CBFS with Shelter Plus Care or MRVP and 1 or 2 will remain as REACH clients.

Discharge Planning Update

Great meeting on 10/28/10.  Over 30 attended, representation from each county.  Everyone agreed that the list of referrals/information exchange is very important.  Reviewed discharge guidelines and proposed changes – “5 days notice” prior to discharge changed to “as soon as possible” – we need more dialogue there.    Consider creation of a communication form to troubleshoot challenges.   Measuring success, defining progress.  Need to do that!

Next round of outreach:  correctional institutions. Will start on this after the December follow-up meeting; will incorporate next steps at that meeting.

Shelter Demand

Friends of the Homeless at capacity, needing to turn away individuals.  We agreed we need to track numbers – is it regional?  Or is it FOH demand (because visible, Resource Center).  Whichever it is, we need to get clear on what’s going on and make the info known to media and State.

Will there be a bump resulting from closing of Worcester shelter?  We need to track what happens with shift.

To do right now:  I will send an email to individual list alerting all of FOH situation.  Ensuring all know about other resources and collect info about demand.

Amherst opening on 11/15, up to 15 beds.

Easthampton has overflow beds, funneled through interfaith cot shelter, opening tonight.

Would like to discuss “banning policies” across shelters in order to understand them and their impact on shelter demand.  We need to understand dry/wet shelter criteria.  Will put all of this on the agenda for December meeting.

Next meeting:  Monday, December 6th, 9:30-11 am, Friends of the Homeless, 769 Worthington Street, Springfield.

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