|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 5, 2012
|Media Contact: Arlyne Alston
Study Examines Housing Program for Dayton's Homeless and Transitioning Youth
COLUMBUS – Preliminary findings have been released from an evaluation of a Dayton-based comprehensive housing program for homeless and transitioning youth. The report, Daybreak: Changing Lives Creating Futures, Year One Process Evaluation, explores 12 months of data collection and research on Daybreak, a nonprofit organization providing street outreach, emergency shelter, transitional housing, crisis intervention and support services to Dayton's homeless youth ages 10 to 21.
Daybreak's mission is to eliminate youth homelessness in the Miami Valley region through comprehensive and results-oriented programs. In 2006, Daybreak received $180,373 in federal housing tax credits and $1 million in Housing Development Loan (HDL) funds. The project later received $600,000 in Housing Development Assistance Program (HDAP) funds, $750,000 from the FHLB Affordable Housing Program and raised over $6 million in private and public funds to create a 50,000 square foot facility that would provide safe shelter and housing for homeless youth.
"Daybreak's program not only provides fundamental support services for homeless youth, it also encourages youth ages 18 to 21 to move towards stable living, financial independence, educational achievement and self-sufficiency," said OHFA Executive Director Doug Garver.
In September 2010, OHFA awarded Daybreak, $290,000 through the Ohio Housing Investment Fund (HIF) to conduct a 27-month assessment on the impact of Daybreak's programs to assess the efficiency, efficacy and impact of the program. This research will allow Daybreak to share best practices and inform policies on permanent supportive housing models. Established in September 2008, the HIF encourages housing initiatives and meets housing needs that are not met by other OHFA programs. This project is a partnership between Daybreak and Community Research Partners (CRP), a Columbus-based organization that designs and conducts program evaluation and applied research to address local, state, and national programs and issues. This study also received funding from The Iddings Foundation and The George Gund Foundation.
CRP released the report which provided a detailed examination of the development and implementation of the organization. The report's findings focus on Daybreak's structure and mission; characteristics and risk factors of homeless youth based on national research; unique challenges faced by the youth Daybreak serves; the community context in which Daybreak operates; numerous programs and support services Daybreak provides; evidence-based practices on which Daybreak's services are based; the ways in which Daybreak partners and coordinates with other service providers in Montgomery County; how community stakeholders view Daybreak, and, perspectives of Daybreak staff regarding the youth they serve and the lessons they have learned about how best to meet their needs.
"CRP's highly trained professional staff are experts in designing and conducting program evaluations and applied research that address local, state, and national programs and issues that measure the impact of program investment," Garver said. "The initial study released by CRP is hugely beneficial for organizations working with homeless and transitioning youth as it provides extensive research on the impact of this valuable program. The findings in this report will help to shape the study’s overall conclusions and provide a quality model worthy of duplication by others implementing a youth housing program."
During the remaining 17 months of the study, CRP will focus on client-based data, which will culminate in an Impact Evaluation to be released in the spring of 2013. The evaluation will examine the relationships existing among homeless youth, their participation in Daybreak's programs, and ultimately their success in transitioning to independent living and self-sufficiency. A final evaluation report will provide recommendations to other youth housing providers with respect to developing and operating youth housing.
"We are very excited about this study," said Linda Kramer, CEO of Daybreak. "We anticipate that it will provide us with valuable information that we and other providers can use to improve our services and programs for homeless youth."
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Daybreak was established in 1975 in Dayton, Ohio as an emergency shelter for runaway and homeless youth. Today, Daybreak operates the Miami Valley's only 24-hour crisis hotline and emergency youth shelter and has grown to include outreach, prevention, transitional housing, life-skills education, and other follow-up services for runaway, throwaway, and homeless youth. Daybreak is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
About Community Research Partners
Community Research Partners was formed to comprehensively address community data and information needs, primarily in central Ohio. Since 2000, the nonprofit research center have worked in collaboration with a network of university and consultant partners, undertaking more than 230 projects and programs for public sector, philanthropic, and nonprofit organizations within and outside of central Ohio. In doing this work, CRP has built a reputation for high-quality, highly usable work that supports planning, policy, and action.
About the Ohio Housing Finance Agency
OHFA is a self-supporting quasi-public agency governed by an eleven-member board. The Agency uses federal and state resources to provide housing opportunities for families and individuals through programs designed to develop, preserve and sustain affordable housing throughout the State of Ohio. OHFA is also the administrator of the state's foreclosure prevention program, Restoring Stability: A Save the Dream Ohio Initiative.