The Hub Provides Resource for Ending Youth Homelessness
Recently, Monarch Housing has been highlighting national resources and best practices around ending youth homelessness. Given the attention that the issue has been gaining at the national level, we were very pleased to see that the New Jersey Department of Children and Families’ (DCF) has announced a new Adolescent Housing Hub (The Hub.) The Hub is an online reservation system and electronic database of housing options for youth and young adults. This new resource provides comprehensive coordination between DCF and local providers.
The Hub was created in collaboration with DCF’s Office of Adolescent Services and PerformCare to provide a more standardized and efficient referral and discharge process for youth housing throughout the state. With the deployment of The Hub, housing programs for youth ages 16 – 21 are now accessible to all DCF-involved youth and youth that are homeless but non-DCF involved. The pilot program will not only improve services for youth, but also provide valuable information regarding housing service delivery and utilization.
How does it work?
To secure a youth bed through The Hub, a DYFS worker, DCBHS care manager, a DCF-contracted housing provider or the youth themselves can call PerformCare at 1-877-652-7624 and press “4”;
Other referents can also call on behalf of the youth with their permission;
Although it is not required, if the Division of Families and Youth Services (DFYS) or Division of Children’s Behavioral Health Services (DCBHS) is involved with the youth, DCF highly recommends that DCF make the call to PerformCare;
Once a call is placed to PerformCare and the youth is registered in the system, a referral will be completed and housing programs will be identified for the youth that meet criteria related to age, gender, location and other specifics;
The names of up to three housing providers will be offered to the caller and housing providers will be able to immediately implement outreach to youth who meet eligibility criteria for their program who are registered in The Hub.
Providing supportive services to youth is critical to making successful transitions into adulthood. It is the hope that The Hub, partnering DCF housing provider agencies and other youth advocates ,will streamline the process of finding appropriate and readily available housing for youth.