Impact and Evaluation
A thorough evaluation is key to B2H’s success. Portland State University’s Regional Research Institute, an independent professional evaluation team, will conduct the evaluation of the Bridges to Housing project. They have designed an evaluation with several components which could continue as a longitudinal study. The evaluation plan relies on data gathered by the four counties through their Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS).
Initial evaluation relies primarily on agency reporting, supplemented by interviews. Intake and quarterly reporting will be consistent across all four counties using a modified version of the Servicepoint software currently used by all four counties for their Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS). Case managers are asked to monitor success of family members in programs which may be provided by others (e.g. after school programs, employment training). Data input has been made as simple as possible using additional fields in the Servicepoint software.
Outcome results will be available semi-annually using Servicepoint reports generated by a central administrator. These will be used to monitor success, re-evaluate program design and make interim adjustments to the program in order to build on our success. Benefits of the program will be measured on three levels; individual and family outcomes, regional system outcomes, and national outcomes. Family success and stability will be measured using a set of standard indicators based on the outcomes listed below. Formal evaluation reports will be done annually.
Outcomes to be measured include:Individual and Family Outcomes
- Housing: Placement and stability in permanent housing
- Economic: Increased income, through employment and/or access to benefits, and improved credit
- Services: Access appropriate mainstream services
- Family: Maintain family unity and safety
- Children: Increase school readiness, performance
- Community: Develop community supports
- B2H will build a region-wide permanent housing supply with supportive services for higher-risk homeless families.
- B2H will reduce movement of families within the region to obtain the help they need.
- B2H will encourage accountability and common adherence to a strategy based on national best practices and evaluation outcomes.
- Within each county, B2H will stimulate more efficient expenditure of public funds, by closing the “revolving door” into and out of temporary housing and other systems (corrections, foster care, and mental health).
- B2H will promote the alignment of housing and service resources to maximize family success. B2H offers an approach based on disciplined coordination between provider agencies.
- B2H success will support advocacy for realignment of public funds at the state and federal levels, decreasing reliance on private fundraising over the course of the program.
B2H will serve as a national model of program design, evaluation, and inter-jurisdictional systems change. Unique aspects of B2H include its holistic approach to family success, incorporation of current best practices, and an inter-jurisdictional, bi-state approach. There is already national interest in B2H’s progress and opportunities to communicate nationally about the program’s design and outcomes.
- December 31, 2007: End of Year Evaluation Report
- September 2008: Mid Year Evaluation Report
- February 2009: Year End 2008 Evaluation Report
- February 2009: Year End 2008 Evaluation Report: Executive Summary Only
- October 2009: Mid Year 2009 Evaluation Report
- May 2010: Year End 2009 Evaluation Report
- May 2010: Year End 2009 Evaluation Report: Executive Summary Only
- May 2011: Year End 2010 Evaluation Report
- July 2012: Final Bridges to Housing Evaluation Report