The Leadership Academy Happens This Week

This week, in West Virginia, about 200 leaders in ending homelessness are coming together to participate in the first ever OrgCode Leadership Academy. I am humbled by how many people have made the commitment to be at the Academy. I said we would do the Academy if there were 40 people interested in it – and it turns out more than five times that were interested if you include the waiting list.

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I Give Thanks

Today is Thanksgiving in Canada. To my good friends south of the border: yes we eat turkey, and watch football (Monday Night Football…or the Canadian Football League), and hang out with relatives – some of whom we legitimately like.

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Measuring a Functional End to Homelessness

It is no easy task to measure an end to something as fluid and dynamic as homelessness. I am not writing this blog to critique approaches that have been suggested by others. Instead my focus is to add my voice on considerations and approaches that communities may want to contemplate to truly declare “Functional Zero”.

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Are Tiny Homes the Answer?

Every day I get a Google News Feed about homelessness. There seems to be a disproportionate number of articles the past few months about tiny homes. They are sometimes called micro homes or city cottage homes or some variation. In some stories you read about an individual citizen creating the tiny home for a person that is homeless that they know. Sometimes it is a completely new development…like a “tiny home suburb”.

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Say What? Volume 3 – The Crazy Sh*t I Have Heard/Encountered This Quarter

Here we go with my third instalment of the year on the weird and unbelievable things I have heard or encountered on the road. This time it covers July, August and September.

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It Ain’t Housing Only (For F Sake)

As you read this blog instalment this week, it is important you remember there is almost always a lag between when I write the blog and when it is posted. I especially do not want people to think I am pointing fingers at specific communities I have been to in the past three weeks given I make my schedule publicly available on FaceBook. Let us focus on the message – not a specific place – because you may see yourself in this instalment.

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More Care Required than Home-Based Case Management Can Provide: What to Do

Not every community can afford to have (or wants to have) a Recovery-Oriented Housing-Focused Assertive Community Treatment team. Even if they did, not every program participant situation can be fully served through the ACT team alone. And while Intensive Case Management teams are more plentiful, they can be confronted with health, wellness and care needs that surpass the knowledge, expertise, or time availability of the ICM team. Many times I have had ICM staff approach me in training asking what to do with those program participants that have really complex health needs, struggle to maintain their apartment because of their health, or have even been working on a palliative care plan with a health provider.

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Considerations in Using Competition and Comparison as a Motivation Strategy

A common approach to motivation of an organization, community or person is to use competition and comparison. There is no doubt that for those that are driven by potential accolades of being first or seen as best this is an approach that kickstarts movement at an accelerated pace. There is also no doubt that some people, organizations and community are not motivated by this quest to be first – or become demotivated when they realize that they are not going to succeed in a way that others are. I say this is akin to watching a track race where the slower competitors decrease their pace even further before they get to the finish line because it doesn’t really matter to them what their time ends up being.

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I will…


Homeless Campuses: What Does the Future Hold?

There was a time when homeless campuses were seen as the best possible approach to working with people experiencing homelessness. Some consultants (experts?) continue to talk about a Housing Fourth approach (read this) as they try to get government officials to choose the campus approach. No doubt, though, there is loads to be learned from existing campuses – and from this learning we can posit what the future may hold.

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