Day 2 of Surveying [in Philly] and Two Words: Blown Away

Posted on May 18, 2011

This past weekend staff from Virginia Supportive Housing and Homeward took part in the 100,000 Homes Registry Week Boot Camp in Philadelphia. On Saturday and Sunday staff learned how to implement to 100,000 Homes Model  in Richmond. Part of that model is a Registry Week where the community administers health surveys to people experiencing homelessness. Volunteers, including Boot Camp attendees, went out at 4am three days in a row to canvas the streets of Philly to find and survey homeless individuals and families. It was an amazing experience. The blog below is after the second day of Registry Week. Please stay tuned for more information on Richmond’s Registry Week (August 1 through 5th) and how to get involved.

This is a guest post by the 100K Homes Philly Campaign. This blog post was originally posted on 100K Homes Philly blog. Tuesday, May 17, 2011 at 07:50PM

It was cold, rainy and just messy on our streets this morning, which means most people want to stay in their nice warm safe beds as long as possible. Thankfully, the 100KHomes Philly teams rose at 2 and 3 am to hit the streets of Philly and see who among us did not have a warm and safe place to be. 

Teams were deployed to Horizon House’s Navigation Center, where over 50 people slept on a floor in Mantua to stay out of the rain. We attempted to survey everyone and most agreed. Teams went again to the SEPTA [subway] concourse and now most folks knew we were coming and organized themselves into a line to do the survey. Teams that had walked the streets and found no one had learned to check under the bridges and I-95 and found 4, 5 or 6 people today where yesterday, they had seen none.   The same teams want to go back again tomorrow, because they are learning, you just have to keep looking. People are there.

Perhaps most exciting, the NEAT team (also known as Team 3) engaged a person on Monday, who had every vulnerability criteria that the folks from 100K Homes national taught us about on Sunday.  Long time on the streets, alcoholism, serious mental illness and chronic health conditions, over 60 years of age, long physical health hospital admissions and ER visits. We had to act.  So the NEAT team went and engaged him again today with his case manager of 10+ years  from PATH and staff from Pathways to Housing PA, who have housing PLUS services to offer him.  We hope we can have him housed by Friday and will keep you posted. 

KYW stopped by and did some interviews at 315 S Broad St and went out with a team. Check out their interview at

This job would be impossible without the dedication and skill of our volunteers. Please don’t lose steam now; we’ve got one more big day and dozens of more people to reach! To date, we have 377 unduplicated interviews. Even for teams that haven’t completed lots of interviews, you are giving us a better idea of where homeless people stay (and where they don’t), which is absolutely invaluable information that will have service and policy implications. Kudos to all who are supporting us.

A warm loving shout out to Project Home and Bethesda Project, that had their opening for Connelly House today.  79 formerly homeless men and women now have a warm, safe place and a community downtown, thanks to the efforts of these two tireless agencies.

Stay dry, stay safe, stay warm, till you come join us again tomorrow.  And even when this event ends, we are not done.  Stay connected to the site for updates on events or how you can support the efforts. Follow us on Twitter at @100KhomesPhilly or like our Facebook page at 100K Homes Philly.

See you tomorrow. It’s supposed to be wet, so be prepared.

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