For the last several years, we’ve partnered with Santa Clara County (SCC) on multiple projects focused on reducing and preventing homelessness. The SCC Homelessness Prevention program provides emergency financial assistance (EFA) to families on the brink of homelessness. Research from our evaluation of the program indicates that EFA decreases the likelihood a recipient will need to enter a shelter and decreases the use of homelessness services over time, preventing a return to homelessness rather than just delaying it. These findings are especially relevant because they occurred in a county with high rates of homelessness and an expensive rental market. Our dissemination team is working with Santa Clara County to present these findings to a larger audience, including an event on campus this fall.
Transforming Evidence into Action
Our dissemination team focuses on making our evidence actionable and builds relationships with policymakers, nonprofits, local governments, and philanthropists. Our presence at the highest levels of policymaking continues to strengthen. Here’s a handful of the many exciting developments in our efforts to share our evidence with policymakers:
LEO is supporting efforts like the recently announced “Year of Evidence for Action” initiative of the Biden-Harris Administration. Launched at its first-ever White House Summit on Evidence for Action, the Administration will co-host a series of events with leading nonprofits and academic organizations to co-develop concrete strategies for mobilizing research-based evidence that can improve the lives of the American public.
In order to lay groundwork for future events and legislation, LEO’s team of Jill Pentamonti, Federal Relations Associate and LEO associate director of research operations, Rachel Fulcher-Dawson met with several policymakers in Washington, DC as well as key policy and advocacy organizations. The current focus of this work is on sharing more about what we know on homelessness prevention, foster care, senior companion programs and transit studies.
Stay tuned as LEO finds new ways to promote the power of using research and evidence to fight poverty through informed policymaking.