For women, a leading cause of homelessness is domestic violence, but many of the general homelessness system tools are responses that were not designed with the specific confidentiality and safety protections that survivors need in mind. This is why the HOME cohort focuses on growing programs and organizations that provide for the safety and economic security of survivors experiencing homelessness. The cohort also serves as a model for future cohorts designed to address the intersectional needs of communities affected by issues like homelessness and domestic violence.
The HOME Cohort meets on a regular basis to improve the safety and economic security of women in California who are experiencing homelessness due to domestic violence, through a combined approach of strengthening and innovating service delivery, building the power of women-led organizations and movements, and advocating for structural change in housing and domestic violence policies and services.
Through this education and collaboration, the HOME Cohort will improve the communication and organizational connections between domestic violence agencies and homeless services, to ensure the network and actions of each organization can grow to incorporate a wider cross-section of experiences and perspectives.
The HOME Cohort currently Includes:
The California Partnership to End Domestic Violence (the Partnership)
For more information about the cohort and its work, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Resource: A Toolkit for Victim Service Providers
Improving Outcomes for Survivors Experiencing Homelessness
Domestic violence and homelessness are deeply connected issues, and many domestic violence organizations work with their cities, counties, and Continuums of Care to ensure that survivors are appropriately included within local homelessness responses. This work is certainly not without its challenges, especially for programs who are just getting started in navigating these systems or struggling to overcome longstanding barriers.
To assist domestic violence agencies with better understanding their Continuums of Care (CoC) systems and how to engage with them more effectively, the HOME Cohort has developed a toolkit. This toolkit has resources and information domestic violence Programs can use to navigate the process of initiating and/or strengthening partnerships with their local Continuums of Care. While the toolkit focuses on the CoCs, these concepts are also applicable to the work with other local entities who may be administering homelessness funding.
Resource: California Survivors’ Housing Rights Lease Addendum
This addendum was created by the HOME Cohort with input from housing and domestic violence service providers, state and national experts, legal advocates, and technical assistance providers working at the intersection of homeless and domestic violence. It can be added to any California tenant lease to explain the legal protections available to survivors residing in the state. Click here to access the addendum in English and click here to access the addendum in Spanish. If you require the addendum in any additional languages, please email email@example.com.
The HOME Cohort hosted a series of lunchtime conversations in February and March 2022 to support advocates in improving their practice and bolstering their capacity to work on housing and homelessness advocacy for survivors. During this series, cohort members shared a new lease addendum outlining survivors’ housing rights; unveiled a toolkit for working with your Continuum of Care; discussed new strategies for how we communicate about the intersection of domestic violence and homelessness; discussed partnerships between local government and community based organizations; and took a deep dive into how to put the data you’re already collecting to work for your agency.
From the Ground, Up: HOME Cohort’s Survivor Housing Lease Addendum
During this Lunch & Learn Series, members of the HOME Cohort’s Advocacy Working Group will share its most recent initiative: a California survivor housing rights lease addendum. From ideation to execution, we will discuss the multiple stages of our brainstorming, strategizing, organizing, and decision-making processes. We will shed light on some of the surprises and challenges we encountered as well as an update on where we are now. Time will be reserved for live Q&A.
Overview of a New Toolkit to Support Domestic Violence Advocates in Engaging With Their Continuums of Care
Domestic violence and homelessness often go hand in hand, yet the level of collaboration between the systems of care designed to address each is inconsistent across communities. Details of this important collaboration are still largely left up to the providers working within each local system. The HOME Cohort’s outreach to California CoCs and Domestic Violence Programs earlier this year provided insight into the various degrees to which these systems intersect in communities across the state, the benefits enjoyed by DV Programs in areas in which effective collaborations have been developed, and some of the barriers DV Programs have encountered when attempting to building these partnerships.
In response to what we’ve learned, the HOME Cohort has developed a toolkit for DV Programs to use as a guide for navigating the process of initiating and/or strengthening partnerships with local CoCs to improve outcomes for survivors experiencing homelessness. In this presentation we will help you navigate this toolkit and make it work for your specific region.
Can We Talk? Changing the Narrative Around DV & Homelessness
Domestic violence and homelessness have often been seen as separate crisis, and services to assist those in need built in silos. This led to a narrative which doesn’t truly tell the full story of the barriers which victims and survivors experience in accessing help and services. Based on data compiled from a long term-project with Berkeley Media Studies Group & the HOME Cohort, the purpose of this webinar is to help advocates, agencies and community members change the narrative and get inspired to craft stronger messaging with the goal of shifting public narrative around survivor homelessness.
This webinar will include strategies on message amplification, use of key messages in advocacy efforts, and changing the narrative. A “narrative change strategy” will be shared that details a multi-pronged approach to achieving our desired narrative shift, thus elevating the critical housing needs of survivors. This webinar is appropriate for those new to the DV field and seasoned veterans who have been working in the field for many years.
I’m Here For It: Building Partnerships Between Cities and CBOs
This workshop will explore different avenues community-based organizations (CBOs) can utilize to build and strengthen partnerships with their City to better serve gender-based violence survivors. We will share anecdotes, dynamic tips, and reflections on advocacy and partnership-building from the perspective of CBOs in Oakland and Los Angeles.
Use Your Data to Access More Funding for Your Housing Programs
Learn how to use data you already collect to highlight the ways homelessness and housing insecurity impacts survivors and learn how to effectively demonstrate how your organization’s work addresses survivors’ housing needs and how that work fits into the overall system for addressing homelessness. You will walk away from this training with a simple one page template that you can complete using data from reports you already produce that can then be shared with local stakeholders, funders, and your Continuum of Care.