LA Homeless Resource Portal
Information and Referral Federation of LA County (DBA 211 LA)
211 LA proposes the development of an online Homeless Resource Portal where homeless service providers and community-based partners in LA County can share and request needed items for homeless families they serve. The user-centric resource portal will also simplify access for homeless individuals and provide real-time availability of resources and basic needs to become self-reliant contributors in their communities.
Please describe the mission of your organization.
211 LA’s mission is to guide people to the vital services that protect, support, inform, and lift them and their communities. The 2-1-1 phone line is open 24 hours, 7 days a week and serves as the central source for information and referrals for all health and human services in Los Angeles County.
In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?
- County of Los Angeles
In what stage of innovation is this project?Expand existing program
What is the need you’re responding to?
211 LA maintains a homeless services website that is available for LA County service providers seeking information, resources, and support for their homeless clients. Currently, only services and programs that are well-established and provide static resources are posted on the homeless services website.
With the significant increase of individuals and families experiencing homelessness in LA County, there is a growing need to quickly and efficiently assist homeless individuals access needed services including food, shelter, and other basic needs. This need is often stifled by the challenge of sharing timely information on fast-moving resources and lack of coordination. This has created the high need for a real-time Homeless Resource Portal with a “bulletin board” feature to help homeless service providers obtain real-time, accurate, and timely information on homeless services and resource currently available; e.g. shelter, showers, nutritious meals, hygiene products, etc.
Why is this project important to the work of your organization?
Since 1981, 211 LA has provided supportive services to homeless individuals living in LA County and maintains a homeless services website that is utilized by hundreds of LA County homeless service providers seeking information, resources, and support for their homeless clients.
The 211 LA team handles approximately 100,000 housing-related contacts every year, maintains a resource database of about 40,000 services, attends hundreds of resource fairs and community events, and has supported LA County’s Coordinated Entry System for Homeless Families by providing emergency shelter/motel vouchers since 2008. 211 LA’s experience has given them years of quantitative and qualitative data on issues related to homelessness and best practice strategies for supporting individuals and families experiencing homelessness. In addition, 211 LA has its own in-house technology develop team who maintains and upgrades all existing 211 systems on a daily basis.
Approximately how many people will be impacted by this proposal?
- Direct impact
- Indirect impact
Please describe the broader impact of your proposal.
211 LA understands that homelessness will not be solved overnight and the issues related to homelessness and factors that contribute to the increase in homelessness are complex. For that reason, 211 LA suggests a relatively simple strategy that will support and enhance LA’s current efforts.
The proposed LA Homeless Resource Portal will serve as a coordination and communication tool that will all service providers to request and share resources needed for homeless individuals and families they serve. This strategy will 1) coordinate resources in real-time, 2) provide homeless individuals with resources as fast as possible, and 3) provide an opportunity for the community at large to get involved, share, and contribute to homeless efforts.
Please explain how you will define and measure success for your project.
Upon development of the LA Homeless Resource Portal, success will be measure by the increased access and utilization of the portal by the following user:
- Number of individuals and families experiencing homelessness seeking accurate information and resources with the intent of finding the help they need quickly and effortlessly, and providing feedback on user experience/service quality when accessing services.
- Number of Homeless Service Providers who review and update their services and resource availability in real-time. Providers will have the ability to review the services they provide. Including but not limited to: Tracking resource availability/utilization in real time, creating ‘pop-up’ or mobile services, managing and calendaring events
- Number of individuals from the general public who are seeking ways to contribute to the overall cause of supporting homeless individuals in LA by: a) providing donations (funds, supplies, materials), b) volunteering, and/or c) providing support and advocacy for someone experiencing homelessness.
In addition to data on access and utilization of the Homeless Resource Portal, 211 LA will measure success based on the usability of the portal. This is to ensure target users (homeless service providers, homeless individuals, and general public wanting to get involved) find the tool to be user-centric with accurate service data with minimal interruptions to their day-to-day roles.
Which of the live metrics will your submission impact?
- Food insecurity
Are there any other LA2050 goal categories that your proposal will impact?
- LA is the healthiest place to CONNECT
Which of LA2050’s resources will be of the most value to you?
- Access to the LA2050 community
- Communications support
- Office space for meetings, events, or for staff
- Capacity, including staff
- Strategy assistance and implementation
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