Study shows Catholic Charities call center prevents homelessness

Author: Leigh Lynes

LEO partnered with Catholic Charities Chicago to study its Homelessness Prevention Call Center. The evaluation found that people who received money to help them stay in their homes were 88% less likely to be homeless after three months and 76% less likely to be homeless after six months, and that it cost about half as much to keep a family in its home than it did to house a family after it became homeless.

“[This research has] been extremely valuable to the call center,” [call center director Wendy] Avila said, noting that more money was earmarked for homelessness prevention and the amount available to each family was increased after the study came out. “We did a follow up with the clients and we found that 67 percent of the callers were stably housed two years later because of the assistance they received. We started with $2,500 per household and now go up to $5,000. I think that being able to say we know what we are doing is working is important.”

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