Add/Edit Offer Review

Offer Details

Section 1 – Offer Summary
(Initial Offer for Budget Year 2022   Offer ID: 28780   
Offer Name
Chattanooga Interagency Council on Homelessness Backbone Organization   Recurring? No
Was City Approved Funding Awarded? For How Much?
Unavailable or Pending.

Primary Results Area Department/Agency Type
Stronger Neighborhoods Signal Centers, Inc. Agency
Section 2 – Summary

For FY2021, Signal Centers applied and was selected as the backbone/lead organization for the Chattanooga Interagency Council on Homelessness (CICH). In this role, Signal Centers provides leadership, support, and coordination to implement the 2018 Homelessness Action Plan For The Chattanooga Community and reduce homelessness in Chattanooga. The Action Plan addresses strategies to combat and end homelessness in the city for people experiencing homelessness both episodically due to a housing crisis, and chronically due to mental or physical health crises or substance use disorders. The Action plan includes a logic model which presents the action items for moving an individual or family from homelessness to permanent housing and housing stability. It is a road map from homelessness to housing. These action items considered, the recommended actions necessary to implement the action, the resources needed, potential partners, milestones and anticipated timeline, as well as what impact the action could have on the community and performance measures to guide that impact. The Plan assumes the flow of a person’s path from homelessness. Signal Centers as the backbone organization is responsible for guiding CICH’s vision and strategy, supporting working groups to advance each item of the action plan, establishing and measuring our community progress towards reducing homelessness, advancing policy changes at all levels of government, and mobilizing funding to support key projects and initiatives in the action plan. Signal Centers hired Mary Ellen Galloway, former Executive Director of Family Promise of Greater Chattanooga, to serve as the leader of these efforts. As the backbone/lead organization, Signal Centers is requesting funding for key projects and operations to continue to manage CICH moving forward. All data provided on Template B2 – Program Beneficiary Statistics is from the CICH Dashboard 2019. Outside Chattanooga 3,064 individuals in 11 counties were served.

Section 3 – Offer Budget Request
Amount Requested Total Cost New Positions Personnel Changes
Last Year ($)
Operational Budget Changes
Last Year ($)
Other Funding
320,000.00 320,000 1
Section 4 – Outcomes
Outcomes – (What outcomes will be produced if your offer is funded?)

The primary outcomes Signal Centers and its CICH support staff seek to achieve are: 1) Support Aligned Activities; 2) Build Public Will; 3) Advance Policy. See Homeless Action Plan attached, page 4, Coordination Challenges and Recommendations.

Outcomes Plan – (What is your plan for producing those outcomes?)

The Signal Centers backbone organization and CICH support staff will achieve the proposed outcomes of 1) Supporting Aligned Activities by convening and facilitating working groups of CICH community partners to advance elements of the shared Action plan and by supporting CICH partners to collaboratively develop new or innovative approaches to meet shared goals; 2) Building Public Will by sharing and building a common understanding of the group’s agenda, vision, and strategy with the public and key stakeholders and empowering community members to take action to advance the Action Plan. This will be accomplished by development of a video with information sharing the mission, vision, and Action Plan goals as well as the Logic Model identifying the Flow From Homelessness to Housing (see attachment). Empowering community members to take action to advance the agenda of the Action Plan will be accomplished by meeting with faith leaders and developing a video to share with congregations at worship services, identifying ways the faith community can help homeless individuals secure and maintain permanent housing. 3) Advancing Policy will be achieved by educating policy makers and elected officials on effective strategies for meeting collective goals of the Action Plan through hosting a mayoral forum. At this forum, mayoral candidates are provided a platform to share their plans to reduce homelessness in the Chattanooga community. Information will be shared with the CICH Board of Directors and community stakeholders on research and best practices on reducing homelessness through the CICH Support Staff’s membership in the National Alliance To End Homelessness, the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, and attendance at the yearly virtual Collective Impact Convenings.

Problem Solved – (What problem are you solving for Chattanooga?)

Homelessness is a growing issue in Chattanooga and if not addressed will have expensive and harmful repercussions on the health of our city and people’s lives and well-being. A review of data collected around homelessness for CICH’s 2018 Action Plan found an increase of 37% in the overall number of people who were homeless from 2016 to 2018 in Hamilton County. In 2016, 1,477 people experienced homelessness in Hamilton County vs. 2,024 people in 2018.

The 2018 Action Plan found several reasons for this increase. First, as Chattanooga’s economy grows and wages increase, the price of housing also increases. People in poverty are one crisis away from losing their home. After an eviction, finding housing that is affordable for one’s income is increasingly difficult because of rising prices.
Second, people in poverty are finding it increasingly more difficult to find a job with a living wage in Chattanooga’s strong job market. With record low unemployment rates, Chattanooga employers can be more selective meaning people with unreliable transportation, criminal records, unstable housing, poor health, or disabilities are left behind.

Finally (and most importantly), once homeless, it is difficult for an individual to find housing and employment to increase their wages and benefits in Chattanooga, meaning the amount of time someone is homeless is prolonged, and issues regarding health, criminal record, and lack of income exacerbate. This is due to a lack of funding to assist with housing and staff to find people experiencing homelessness, assist them with securing housing, and support them to improve their income and stability afterwards. Although the homeless population has been growing, local resources to address the issue have been relatively flat, and some state and federal programs to address homelessness have even been reduced.

If the growing homeless population is not addressed, taxpayers will be left to pay the cost. According to a review of 33 studies in the U.S. and Canada by the National Alliance to End Homelessness, a person experiencing chronic homelessness costs taxpayers an average of $35,578 per year, but if that person is placed into permanent supportive housing, the costs are reduced by 49.5% to $12,800 per year. In 2019, Chattanooga had approximately 383 individuals and 61 families who were chronically homeless. Federal resources provided permanent housing for approximately 80 of these individuals, leaving 303 individuals and families chronically homeless. These 303 individuals and families who cannot access permanent housing will cost taxpayers of $10.8 million each year they are homeless vs. $3.8 million a year if they were stably housed, a difference of about $7 million per year in taxpayer dollars.

Our failure to address this issue locally is due to a lack of resources, a lack of a coordinated strategy to apply resources to, and poor systems and processes that cause long periods of homelessness. Homeless service providers rely on federal funding and local private giving to provide their services, and this funding has not increased to meet the scale of the issue. Finally, programs and services are decentralized with high barriers to access, meaning difficulties and barriers for a person experiencing homelessness to access and navigate them. To address these needs, CICH created the 2018 Homelessness Action Plan for the Chattanooga Community which is a comprehensive plan to meet our local needs. It includes raising funds and support to meet these needs, implementing new programs and projects according to the plan, and coordinating staff and leadership across agencies to improve and streamline processes and systems.

Additional Information – (What else should the Results Team know?)

On December 21, 2018, CICH published its Homelessness Action Plan For the Chattanooga Community and members began the search for an organization to serve as the backbone support of their collective efforts to implement, update, and measures the results of the Action Plan. On February 4, 2020 the CICH Board of Directors approved Signal Centers as the Backbone organization and on April 2, 2020, Signal Centers hired a CICH support staff person. Signal Centers support staff worked with the CICH Co-Coordinators and organized, guided, and assisted in the development of the CICH Board of Directors, By-Laws, and the Annual Affirmation Statement on Code of Ethics and Conflict of Interest Policies. At its annual meeting on September 18, 2020 a slate of officers were presented for approval and the presentation of the Committee Chairs were announced. At that meeting CICH reported on its 2020 Update and the CICH support staff reported on the goals for the year ahead. At the following meeting on December 4, 2020, there was an update on both the Committee reports and Action Plan Updates. Wendy Winters, ED of the Chattanooga Regional Homeless Coalition and chair of the Governance Committee, reported on the goals of the Governance Committee. Tyler Yount, the Program Committee Chair, reported the Chronic Homeless Program and the Hotel/Motel Temporary Emergency Shelter. Steve Brooks, ED of the Downtown Alliance, spoke on the Ambassador’s Program, Karen Guinn the ED of the Homeless Healthcare Center reported on the Mobile Services Van and its use to deliver testing and vaccine delivery to homeless individuals and families, Dr. Jimmy Turner COO of the Community Kitchen discussed COVID-19 Diversions, Carmen Hudson, from United Way introduced Chris Hernandez as the person at UW responsible for the Community Resource Guide.

In addition, Signal Centers developed a CICH Dashboard designed, developed, and maintained by the University of Tennessee Social Work Office of Research and Public Service to establish shared measurement practices. It enables CICH to gather data to report back results of shared measurements to partners and help partners use data to adapt and refine their strategies.

In order to sustain the progress and momentum of CICH in FY22, funding is necessary to subsidize the lead support staff position and operations of the backbone organization. $320,000 will fund the staffing and support for operations of the backbone organization.

Section 5 – Performance Measures
How will you know if you are on track and successful?
Measure #1 of 5
1- Measure Name 1- In Order To: 1- the
Identifier for this specific measure accomplish what goal? City department or program
Support Aligned Activities of Action Plan-Coordinate CICH Action Plan working groups to implement Action Plan Reduce homelessness Signal Centers, CICH Backbone Organization
1- will (direction) 1- will (metric) 1- by 1- in
increase or decrease? change “what”? How much change? (Percentage or raw count) What timeframe? FY 2018, for example
Achieve FY22 CICH Homelessness Action Plan 100% FY22
1- Baseline FY 2018 Actual 1- Baseline FY 2019 Actual 1- Baseline FY 2020 Actual 1- Target FY 2021 1- Projected FY 2021 1- Target FY 2022
80% 100%
Measure #2 of 5
2- Measure Name 2- In Order To: 2- the
Identifier for this specific measure accomplish what goal? City department or program
Build Public Will- Develop Video Reduce Homelessness Signal Centers, CICH Backbone Organization
2- will (direction) 2- will (metric) 2- by 2- in
increase or decrease? change “what”? How much change? (Percentage or raw count) What timeframe? FY 2018, for example
Achieve FY22 CICH Homelessness Action Plan 100% FY22
2- Baseline FY 2018 Actual 2- Baseline FY 2019 Actual 2- Baseline FY 2020 Actual 2- Target FY 2021 2- Projected FY 2021 2- Target FY 2022
80% 100%
Measure #3 of 5
3- Measure Name 3- In Order To: 3- the
Identifier for this specific measure accomplish what goal? City department or program
Advance Policy – Educate Policy makers & elected officials -Host forums to share research/best practices and effective strategies to end homelessness. Reduce Homelessness Signal Centers, CICH Backbone Organization
3- will (direction) 3- will (metric) 3- by 3- in
increase or decrease? change “what”? How much change? (Percentage or raw count) What timeframe? FY 2018, for example
Achieve FY22 CICH Homelessness Action Plan 100% FY22
3- Baseline FY 2018 Actual 3- Baseline FY 2019 Actual 3- Baseline FY 2020 Actual 3- Target FY 2021 3- Projected FY 2021 3- Target FY 2022
80% 100%
Section 6 – Attachments
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Agency-Level Attachments

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Contact Information
Contact Name Contact Email
Donna McConnico

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