Chris Spahle of Downtown Phoenix Inc. talks about working with the homeless in downtown Phoenix on Jan. 6, 2017. Mark Henle/azcentral.com
A first-of-its-kind look at how well a new homelessness intervention is working for single adults in Maricopa County found that just over half of participants completed the pilot program and remained in housing months later.
The program emerged from an overflow-shelter crisis in the county and moved 252 people from deficient spaces near downtown Phoenix into apartments its first years.
At the outset, providers didn’t know much about people who slept there or whether a housing model used primarily for families would work for them.
For single adults experiencing homelessness, the evaluation released Tuesday by consulting company Focus Strategies details both early successes and struggles of Arizona’s biggest test of rapid rehousing. Single adults are the largest portion of the homeless population nationwide.
Valley of the Sun United Way, an organization helping fund the program, commissioned the report.
The idea is to transfer people from a shelter to more permanent housing such as apartments as quickly as possible, provide temporary rent assistance and give them case-management services for needs such as employment.
Maricopa County groups launched a pilot program about two years ago with $2.5 million from public and private groups.
The report comes as agencies continue to fund rapid rehousing and seek other ways to make…
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