“Home is a notion that only nations of the homeless fully appreciate and only the uprooted comprehend.” – Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose –
The City of Toronto, in partnership with the Toronto Alliance to End Homelessness and the Canadian Observatory on Homelessness, are calling for proposals for presentation at the inaugural Toronto Homelessness Research Symposium:
Connecting Research to Practice:
Developing Toronto’s research agenda to solve homelessness
Monday, October 19, 2015
The event aims to bring together a diverse range of researchers, practitioners, and policy makers to inform development of a homelessness research agenda for Toronto. The purpose of the research agenda will be to clearly identify the research questions that will help in developing effective policy and program solutions to homelessness. The research agenda will support implementation and evaluation of the City’s Housing Stability Service Plan, as it transforms the homelessness service system from one that is reactive and focused on temporary, emergency responses to one that is responsive, flexible and focused on permanent, preventative Housing First solutions.
Call for Proposals – Submission Deadline: Friday, July 31, 2015
ABOUT THE SYMPOSIUM
Four themes have been identified to guide the symposium:
- Preventing homelessness;
- Helping people to exit homelessness;
- Creating options for housing with appropriate supports; and
- Developing coordinated systems responses.
Each theme presents different challenges and possibilities for solving homelessness in Toronto.
The symposium will consist of a number of concurrent panels, guided by the four themes. Presenters will each be assigned to a panel which will be followed by a theme-specific discussion. There will be a moderator present to facilitate the workshop and assist delegates and presenters to identify future research questions related to each theme area.
The final session of the day will see presenters and delegates come together to share the learnings of each workshop and examine other research avenues for solving homelessness in Toronto. This information will contribute to development of a comprehensive research agenda for the coming five years.
ABOUT THE PROPOSALS
Who should submit a proposal?
Presenters from a broad range of research, practice, and policy arenas are encouraged to submit a proposal. We also encourage those with a lived experience of homelessness to submit a proposal based on their experience within the homelessness system, or their involvement in research.
Presenters will be placed in panels based on themes with the aim of creating a balance between research and service delivery. If there are specific presenters who you would like to be on a panel with, please nominate them on the proposal form (ideally this person is someone with different experience than you – for example, you’re a researcher and they’re a service provider).
The presentations will adhere to the following guidelines:
- Length: 15 minutes
- Purpose: To share effective approaches, new research on innovative models, or policy alternatives to solving homelessness in Toronto. Each presentation should briefly address what future research questions may arise from material presented. In addition to presenting research finding, the emphasis in presentation proposals should be on encouraging dialogue and making connections between researchers and policy makers and/or program delivery organizations.
- Theme: Proposals should fall under one of the four symposium themes. Possible topics for each theme are described below, however the list is not exhaustive. We encourage those whose presentation doesn’t neatly fit within any one topic to submit a proposal, if it relates to an innovative solution to homelessness in any area not identified below.
- Effective program and support models for eviction prevention
- Effectiveness of rapid re-housing programs and other models of targeted financial supports for at-risk households
- Characteristics of households at risk of eviction and how to target interventions
- Shelter diversion strategies
- Systems solutions for eviction prevention
- Improving hospital discharge processes to avoid discharging into homelessness
- Preventing homelessness among youth leaving care
- Early intervention solutions to prevent youth homelessness
- Post-incarceration interventions to avoid homelessness
Helping people to exit homelessness
- Characteristics of long-term homeless, short-term homeless and episodically homeless, and differences in housing solutions and service approaches
- Housing First case management approaches
- Housing assessment tools
- Effective service models for ending homelessness for specific populations (e.g. youth, seniors, families, Aboriginal people, recent immigrants, LGBTQ2S)
- Housing First in emergency shelters
- Transitional housing in a Housing First context
Creating options for housing with appropriate supports
- Innovative models of housing with supports
- Effective housing support models for specific populations (e.g. youth, seniors, families, Aboriginal people, recent immigrants, LGBTQ2S)
- Working with landlords and opportunities for supportive housing in private market rental
- The role of permanent supportive housing in Housing First
- The role of social housing providers in solving homelessness
- Strategies for people who are not successful in scattered site Housing First programs
- Effective approaches to improving housing stability and economic reintegration after homelessness
- Effective models of high support housing for people with complex health issues
- Harm reduction and housing
Developing coordinated systems responses
- Enhancing systems coordination
- Integrating health supports and housing
- Long term care models for homeless populations
- Improving coordinated access points to housing and homelessness services
- Quality assurance and performance measurement systems for housing and homelessness service systems
- Training and capacity building for front-line staff
- Engaging people with lived experience
- Peer support models of service and support
- Building public and political support for solutions to homelessness
Your proposal will include the following information using the proposal form:
- Name, position, organization, address, phone, and email
- Title of your presentation
- Nomination of the theme your presentation falls under
- Presentation description (maximum 1 page) (this will be used in the symposium program if your proposal is accepted)
- Brief biography (1/2 page)
- Names of any other presenters submitting a proposal who you would like to sit on a panel with
- Suggested future research directions related to your presentation (1/2 page)
Article by Canadian Observatory on Homelessness – July 10, 2015