Progress in a Time of Challenge: NAEH Conference on Ending Family Homelessness

The National Alliance to End Homelessness holds an annual Conference on Ending Family Homelessness. HRC’s Kathleen Guarino attended the 2009 conference in San Diego, CA, and shares highlights in this article.

Each year in February, the National Alliance to End Homelessness (NAEH) holds the National Conference on Ending Family Homelessness. Over 500 consumers and providers from across the country migrate to the West coast for two days of mid-winter warmth…and to learn about national, cutting-edge models for addressing and ending family homelessness. Perhaps most importantly, annual conferences like this one allow people to step back from their day-to-day lives, reflect on their work, learn something new and network with one another.

This year’s workshops focused on homelessness policies, prevention strategies, and promising housing and service intervention models. As with any conference, there are always a few sessions that stand out.

During the “Client-Centered, Trauma-Informed, and Culturally-Proficient Practice” workshop, panelists offered concrete ideas and tools for raising individual and organizational awareness of the impact of trauma, understanding the principles of trauma-informed care, fostering a client-centered approach to daily practice, and acknowledging the need for dialogue about the role of culture.

“The Intersection of Child Welfare and Homelessness” workshop featured current research on the relationship between child welfare and homelessness. Panelists identified child welfare involvement as a risk factor for homelessness and discussed strategies for helping families stay together.

Finally, the “Future of Federal Policy for Homeless Families” provided the most up-to-date information about new funding opportunities, possible changes to homelessness policy, and strategies for capitalizing on these opportunities at state and local levels.

Didn’t make it to this year’s Conference on Ending Family Homelessness? Check back to the National Alliance to End Homelessness soon to download resources from the conference sessions!

Publication Date: 
Rockville, MD, USA