FY22 Annual Report
Prevention is... the mission
Thanks to you, this past year has been one of impact, innovation and change for The Partnership.
Thanks to your compassion and support, we provided more than 10,000 direct housing, health and crisis services, stabilized more than 2,500 New Yorkers in their homes and partnered with organizations city-wide to provide mental health support services and emergency food provision.
Thanks to journalists and thought leaders, Lisa Ling and Soledad O’Brien, we launched our public awareness initiative to highlight that homelessness prevention can solve homelessness and advance racial and gender equity. This video series demonstrates that prevention is more cost-effective than allowing homelessness to happen, and that homelessness is a story about women and children of color disproportionately hurt by domestic violence, evictions and overcrowding in a city with a dearth of affordable housing and housing assistance.
Thanks to our clients and Board, on foot of a two-year prevention experiment and an assessment of client need and citywide services, we changed our mission and set a FY23-26 strategy that redefines our role to be a homelessness prevention organization. In tandem, we officially changed our organizational name to become The Partnership To End Homelessness.
Thanks to major and institutional donors, like the Federal Home Loan Bank, New York, we launched the Save Homes Fund, a multi-year campaign to fuel our prevention work by raising $12M to save the homes of 6,000 New Yorkers, at a cost savings of $228M. We invite and welcome the partnership of all who can support the Fund.
As 2023 dawns, we are honored to continue working on your behalf to save the homes of thousands more of our New York City neighbors and prevent homelessness.
Thank you for your partnership,
Áine Duggan, President & CEO
Prevention is... the impact
FY22 Impact, Innovation and Change
Direct Service Impact
- We provided 10,000 direct housing, health and crisis services.
- We stabilized 2,500 New Yorkers in their homes at a cost savings of almost $95 Million to the City and State.
- We provided support services to 16 mental health providers and partnered with emergency food programs to provide
380,000 meals to New Yorkers at risk of hunger.
- Our programs prevented homelessness and provided a solid foundation primarily for women and children of color, who account for the majority (85%) of our clients, and undocumented immigrants, who account for almost one-third of our clients.
Each household received a unique blend of services tailored to the specific needs of family members. Our housing assistance includes rental and financial assistance, and when necessary, rehousing to protect families surviving, or at risk of, domestic violence. Our crisis interventions ensure the necessary support for clients in need of food and education access, and provides navigation services to ensure individuals and families receive the housing and other government benefits for which they are eligible. Our health services provide mental health and well-being programming via individual counseling and support groups.
How our prevention programming is innovative
Our rental assistance program is a full payment, full grant model.
In contrast to the standard, time-consuming NYC partial payments rental assistance model, which requires a family to conduct a client intake with several organizations, and results in numerous letters to be generated for the Housing Court and several payments to be processed by property owners, our model cuts through this maze and works efficiently to ensure clients receive government rental assistance for which they are eligible and covers 100% of any rental arrear gaps that remain.
Additionally, it is a grant and not a loan and clients have no repayment burden. This full payments model ensures that clients are quickly secured in their homes and property owners receive one full payment, thereby increasing the success of mediations. In FY22, this model allowed The Partnership to achieve new lease agreements, arrears discounts, rent reductions and maintenance repairs when necessary.
This year, we ran a pilot program that combines housing assistance with culturally-appropriate mental health services. Due to histories of childhood abuse and/or domestic violence, many of our clients live with complex trauma which thwarts their ability to perform practical daily functions (at home and at work), and remain stably housed and well. Most have not had access to adequate and culturally-appropriate mental health care.
Our pilot combined Mental Health and Well-being services with our Housing and Crisis services as an upstream intervention to create a different outcome for our clients. This model provides the rental assistance or rehousing intervention that immediately prevents a client from losing their home and entering the shelter system, while simultaneously providing access to culturally-appropriate therapy that addresses their complex trauma and stabilizes them in their home long term.
As the experience of Celina Duran* demonstrates, combining counseling and housing assistance also provides the foundation upon which families at risk of homelessness can rebuild and are better equipped to succeed in further endeavors such as employment and education.
Celina’s Story Client of The Partnership
When Celina Duran followed a neighbor's advice and contacted The Partnership in the summer of 2022, she had an arrears bill of more than $2,000 and was worried that she and her three children would lose their home and end up sleeping in a shelter.
Six months earlier, Celina had felt safe and happy in her South Bronx home with 2 year old Lucas, 8 year old Amber and 13 year old Mariela. Celina had been working full-time in a restaurant earning $2,083 per month, and although the family could not afford any extras, Celina was up to date on her rent and could afford food and other basics. Celina felt proud that Amber and Mariela were doing well at school and was thankful to have a family member supporting her with childcare for Lucas.
When Celina contracted Covid at the end of 2021, the family’s sense of safety quickly unraveled. Unable to work, Celina lost her job and immediately fell into rent arrears as her savings were not enough to pay for rent and food. Although Celina quickly found a new job when her health returned, she could only secure part-time hours and she struggled for months trying but not succeeding to pay the rent, clear the arrears bill and keep food on the table. Simultaneously, Mariela’s grades began to slip and Celina's anxiety and despair increased - she could not see a way out and began missing work shifts as she tried to provide extra support to Mariela.
Once she contacted The Partnership, our Housing Team stepped in and secured the family’s home by settling the rental arrears with the property owner and getting a new lease in place. With the immediate stress of losing her home lifted, Celina spoke with a program manager about participating in the organization’s health and well-being program. Soon, she was meeting weekly with a program therapist and began for the first time in her life to talk about a past experience of domestic violence and her own childhood struggles with poverty and housing insecurity.
Today, Celina has returned to full-time work and her family remains safely and stably housed. While she still struggles to meet increased living costs, she is out of debt and feels optimistic. Mariela is doing well at school again, and Celina is continuing to work with our program team and has already enrolled in our upcoming financial empowerment training.
*Names of clients have been changed to protect their confidentiality
Prevention is... the change
Change the Public Narrative
In FY22, we partnered with journalists Lisa Ling and Soledad O’Brien to disrupt the standard story about homelessness and generate a conversation about who is most hurt by the issue and what solutions are needed. In conversations that launched a public education video series, as well as a March 2022 event in New York City with Soledad O’Brien, we highlighted NYC data showing that homelessness is a story about women and children of color, disproportionately hurt by domestic violence, evictions and overcrowding in a city with a dearth of affordable housing and housing assistance. For example, of the existing shelter population (now more than 60,000) 70% is comprised of families — more than 90% of which are headed by women — one-third is comprised of children and more than 95% identify as people of color. By exploring that upstream interventions to prevent homelessness are more cost-effective than shelter provision, these conversation importantly reframed homelessness and the imperative to prevent it as a matter of racial and gender equity.
Prevention is... the strategy
New Strategy and Looking Forward
In 2022, the organization reflected on its almost 40-year history — from providing shelter and drop-in center services to services focused on families, women and children, including eviction prevention, housing placement, employment training, women’s health, HIV services, furniture provision and emergency food distribution.
Leveraging this robust history, as well as client and donor input, an assessment of work by other organizations and data from our two-year experiment focused on prevention, The Partnership set a new FY23-26 Strategy. Following an approach of innovating by reduction, the organization narrowed its focus and redefined its mission to ending homelessness by preventing it, and evolved our name accordingly to The Partnership To End Homelessness.
The organization considered that while only a fraction of the City’s current $2.2B spending on homelessness is devoted to prevention, the estimated less than 5,000 New Yorkers experiencing street homelessness and more than 60,000 New Yorkers residing in homeless shelters, are equivalent to approximately 10% of the more than half a million New Yorkers living in rent arrears and at risk of homelessness.
The Partnership’s FY23-26 Strategy focuses all of its work on upstream interventions to step in before people lose the homes they have and end homelessness before it even begins.
Leveraging data illustrating that for the approximate $100,000 cost of one family going into a homeless shelter, 20 families can be assisted to keep their own homes, we launched the Save Homes Fund.
Our three-year Save Homes Fund campaign to raise $12M has already secured a number of foundation, corporate and individual partners who are providing the prevention funding that will ensure our clients do not lose their homes.
For example, during a June 2022 event to launch the Fund, the Federal Home Loan Bank announced a second gift of $250,000 to support the Save Homes Fund in 2023. We are excited and thrilled by, and very thankful for, our partnership with our Federal Home Loan Bank partners.
Dan’s Story Affordable Housing Program Analyst, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York
The importance of homelessness prevention is best captured by Dan Kaiserski, Affordable Housing Program Analyst, Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, who spoke during the Save Homes Fund event this year.
Ending homelessness and investing in safe and healthy communities is at the core of the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York’s mission. We’re incredibly proud of the community development and affordable housing projects that we invest in through our Affordable Housing Program, Homebuyer Dream Program, and Community Lending Program. While many of our investments often focus on affordability for homeowners and the creation of new affordable housing supply to help alleviate this problem, the Save Homes Fund’s prevention effort to keep at-risk people in their homes are a vital and innovative part of a comprehensive approach to addressing homelessness.
I personally became interested in ending homelessness and affordable housing while working as a teacher in New York City. Broker fees, high initial deposits and incredible competition for a meager stock of affordable homes and apartments made it nearly impossible to find a place to live for me and many of my coworkers and students. Rather than sit idly by, I chose to get involved and have worked personally and professionally to promote high-quality affordable housing for the past 5 years.
Becoming homeless can set off a cascade of effects on a person’s life, in ways that impact mental and physical health, relationships, career and educational opportunities. By investing in a robust supply of quality affordable homes where housing is most needed and preventative efforts like the Save Homes Fund that keep people in their homes, we can address many of these problems before they happen much more compassionately, efficiently and effectively than waiting until after they occur.
Thank you for preventing homelessness for thousands of New Yorkers and their children in 2022. As we forge ahead in FY23, and mark our 40th year, we will continue partnering with you to keep thousands more New Yorkers safe in their own homes, and drive ongoing innovation to end homelessness by preventing it.