SAN DIEGO (May 24, 2012) – Project 25, United Way’s Frequent User Initiative, was awarded the Public-Private Partnership Award by the San Diego County Taxpayers Association (SDCTA) at the 17th Annual Golden Awards Dinner on May 16, which honors smart, sensible practices in taxpayer-funded programs, while providing public service reporting on issues of concern to taxpayers.
Funded and facilitated by the United Way of San Diego County, Project 25 is a vital and historic collaboration with the County of San Diego and City of San Diego/San Diego Housing Commission that provides permanent housing and supportive services to those homeless individuals who most frequently use public resources.
At the one-year anniversary of the program earlier this year, United Way’s Brian Maienschein announced that 35 chronically homeless individuals were enrolled and 30 permanently housed. By aiding some of the most frequent users of public resources, Project 25 has already saved taxpayers an estimated $5 million in its first year of operations and offered a fresh start to individuals previously written off as being too difficult to help.
Creating the first comprehensive data collection for San Diego’s most costly homeless individuals, Project 25 tracks and compiles the total cost of services used by each person, before and after entering into the program. The average cost to taxpayers per participant in 2010 was $317,904 vs. $97,437 in 2011 while enrolled in Project 25, according to data which has been reviewed and validated by the Fermanian Business & Economic Institute at Point Loma Nazarene University.
Since Project 25 began in February 2011, St. Vincent de Paul Village has implemented the program, including customized case management for enrolled individuals. The success of Project 25 is based on United Way’s strong partnership with dozens of organizations countywide, including Alpha Project, Alvarado Parkway Institute, County of San Diego District Attorney, County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, Family Health Centers of San Diego, Paradise Valley Hospital, Promise Hospital, Salvation Army, San Diego County Sheriff’s Office, San Diego Housing Commission, San Diego Police Department, San Diego Rescue Mission, San Diego Medical Services Enterprise, Scripps Health, Sharp HealthCare, UC San Diego Medical Center and the VA Hospital.
Please Note: Statistics provided are preliminary data gathered thus far for 2011 data and does not yet include numbers for the full 12 months. Comparison to the pre-intervention data is limited at this time, but promising. Data has been reviewed and approved by the Fermanian Business & Economic Institute at Point Loma Nazarene University.
“Home Again” is United Way’s public engagement campaign to involve the broader community in ending chronic homelessness in San Diego County. It educates San Diegans about the proven “Housing First” model, which advocates for affordable housing first while simultaneously integrating supportive services. The campaign encourages the general public to “Learn more. Spread the word. Open a door.”
A chronically homeless person is defined as an unaccompanied disabled individual who has been continuously homeless for over one year. Although the chronically homeless are a minority of the overall homeless population, they drain significant resources – including legal, medical and emergency services – at a high cost to our community.
The funding United Way is raising will be spent on additional permanent supportive housing and services for the chronically homeless throughout San Diego County. For more information, visit http://www.homeagainsd.org, “like” on Facebook or “follow” on Twitter.
United Way of San Diego County is a nonprofit organization that for over 90 years has improved lives by mobilizing the community and raising funds to solve Education, Income and Health issues. The United Way movement creates long lasting community change by addressing the underlying causes of problems that prevent progress in these areas. LIVE UNITED is a call to action for everyone to become part of the change. To learn more about the United Way, visit http://www.uwsd.org,“like” on Facebook or “follow” on Twitter.