The Mayor’s Office of Homeless Services Outreach Program is committed to transforming the lives of individuals experiencing homelessness through comprehensive street outreach that restores dignity and partners with individuals to reach their housing and life goals. Using a collaborative approach to street outreach, providers within the Continuum of Care will be able to:
- Identify, engage and assess individuals in need of services,
- Refer and keep engaged individuals connected to services,
- Report any changes to individual statuses, and
- Document contact and collect needed documentation for referred programs and services.
These outreach goals are met by meeting people where they are in order to build relationships and by establishing creative community partnerships that eliminate barriers to services. The goal is to provide housing to those who need it. Based on vulnerability, persons are classified and connected to housing resources via the Coordinated Entry System (CES).
Our Outreach staff works to build trust with those experiencing homelessness first by helping to meet some of their basic needs (including food, clothing, showers, laundry, transportation, identification, etc.). Then, they partner with each individual to access housing, employment, medical care, mental health care, substance abuse treatment, and other services. Additionally, we partner with Healthcare Access Maryland, People Encouraging People, Baltimore Police’s Crisis Response Team and other agencies who are able to provide a nurse practitioner and or psychiatrist to conduct street visits to engage people with complex health needs who are not connected to other health services. The approach is not about maintaining homelessness; it is about ending homelessness for those living in Baltimore City.