Centres where homeless people can spend time during the day or evening. Services may include counselling and/or medication monitoring on a formal or informal basis; personal hygiene supplies; facilities for showering, shaving, napping, laundering clothes, making necessary telephone calls or attending to other personal needs; and other basic supportive services. Some centres may also provide meals or facilities for cooking. Programs that focus on homeless youth may provide case management, living skills training, family reunification assistance, classes and other educational supports, pre-employment training, health education (including HIV prevention), help in obtaining valid ID and other services that help youth successfully exit street life and transition to independent living.
Programs that provide a temporary place to stay (usually three days to two weeks), generally in dormitory-style facilities with very little privacy, for people who have no permanent housing. Also included are programs that provide motel vouchers for people who are homeless.
Programs that provide affordable, community-based housing for individuals and families who have experienced long-term or chronic homelessness and have been diagnosed as having a physical or developmental disability, a severe mental illness, substance use disorder problems or HIV/AIDS; or are members of another designated group within the homeless population. Structures may include apartments, single-family houses, duplexes, group homes or single-room occupancy housing. Permanent supportive housing programs generally provide residents with the rights of tenancy under provincial or local landlord/tenant laws and are linked to services designed to meet residents' needs. Supportive services vary depending on the resident population. Most programs offer some type of case management and housing support, but may also offer more intensive mental health, substance use disorder, vocational, employment or other services which help promote independent living. Supportive services may be offered on-site or off-site, or be provided by a mobile service team and may be available to people with current housing who are at risk of becoming homeless.
Programs that provide transportation services for homeless people from the streets to a local shelter with available space, either from a established pick-up site or by appointment from the individual’s current location. Also included are programs that provide transportation between shelters or to and from medical clinics, detoxification facilities, public assistance offices and other local service providers.
Programs that provide comprehensive assessment, ongoing case management, work readiness, job training, job development, job placement services, post-placement follow-up and/or supportive services that are tailored to the specific needs of homeless individuals who need assistance preparing for, finding and retaining paid employment. Many programs specifically target outreach and enrollment efforts on homeless individuals or specific groups within the homeless population (e.g., homeless veterans, homeless youth, homeless individuals with serious mental illness, permanent supportive housing residents); and some partner with other organizations working with people who are homeless such as local mental health agencies; one-stop career centres; community-based nonprofit vocational rehabilitation agencies; case management organizations; housing agencies; and the local public housing authority.
Programs that help people who are homeless because they have become estranged from their families establish contact with their families. The program may also, where appropriate, help them negotiate the conditions under which they can return to their families and arrange for transportation home.
Organizations that advocate for constructing, renovating or otherwise improving the availability of safe, affordable rental and purchasable housing for low-income individuals and families, older adults, people with disabilities, migrant workers and others who are unable to purchase a home or rent a home or apartment under current market conditions or who are forced to spend an excessively large proportion of their income on housing to the detriment of other necessities.
Organizations that work to develop and implement solutions to the problem of poverty at local, provincial or national levels, and the consequent difficulty that low-income individuals have in obtaining access to food, housing, clothing and the other basic necessities of life.
The above terms and definitions are part of the Taxonomy of Human Services, used here by permission of INFO LINE of Los Angeles.