Newsletter – August 2016

September 2016
In This Issue
As Integral Care has worked to develop Housing First Oak Springs, we have received invaluable help and support from individuals throughout the community. I am thrilled to announce that as of August 19, that support has grown significantly, thanks to a generous “challenge grant” from local businessman and philanthropist Dick Rathgeber.
I have known Mr. Rathgeber for over 20 years and have worked with him on a number of local initiatives.
His community spirit and keen interest in contributing to the public good have always been a benefit for central Texas. When Mr. Rathgeber heard about Housing First Oak Springs, he was eager to support the project. In order to make his support go even further he issued a challenge – if $2 million is raised by December 2017, he will boost that amount by $1 million, helping us meet our fundraising goals.
As a businessperson, Mr. Rathgeber knows a successful project when he sees it, and as a community member, he uses his success to support important programs making a difference for the people who live here. We are grateful for this generous challenge grant and look forward to continued community support as we move closer to making Housing First Oak Springs a reality.
David Evans
Chief Executive Officer
Austin Travis County Integral Care

The Impact
Since 2013, Integral Care has used the Housing First model in a variety of sites throughout Austin. Our experience shows that it works in our community to increase housing stability and reduce over utilization of public resources. Eighty-five percent of individuals we housed stay housed for 12 months or more. An analysis of 39 people housed for 12 months and provided wraparound services showed significant reductions in encounters with law enforcement and decreased utilization of health services such as EMS transport and hospital stays. These included:

These and other dramatic decreases in service utilization translate into real savings for our community. Based on the results achieved through our current Housing First efforts, we estimate that housing 50 more of the most vulnerable people in our community will result in savings of at least $1 million per year.

In the News

Over 300 people gathered in Eureka, California for Humboldt’s Housing Summit and pledged to house 30 people in 30 days. Follow the link below to read about how Eureka is coming together to address its homeless population’s housing needs.

Putting Heads Together for Housing First

New approaches to homelessness in Houston, including permanent supportive housing, are lowering rates of people living on the streets by as much as 75%. Cities like Seattle, whose numbers are trending in the opposite direction, are taking notice. Seattle Mayor Ed Murray will propose Houston-style changes to turn the Emerald City into a “well-oiled machine” by streamlining a maze of community resources into a single path to housing.

Lessons for Seattle: How Houston has housed thousands of homeless

Meet The Team
“Goodwill understands that people with mental illness are people first and believes they can be contributing neighbors as well. We have a huge responsibility to the community and wonderful tools with which to serve it.”                                                                         

— Gerald L. Davis, President and CEO

Goodwill Central Texas

Part of the Housing First philosophy is to provide residents with wrap-around services that help them re-integrate into the community. Our partnership with Goodwill will provide employment assistance to Housing First Oak Springs residents.
Read what Goodwill CEO, Jerry Davis, has to say about the importance of providing employment assistance to individuals living with mental illness.  Read his full interview.

Make Housing First Oak Springs A Reality      
Thanks to the Downtown Austin Alliance’s generous $150,000 matching funds pledge, the impact of your gift is worth twice as much. Double your donation today!

Special Recognition
Strong, positive relationships are crucial to fundraising.  Integral Care is grateful for the invaluable insight and guidance of its Housing First Oak Springs Campaign Cabinet:

Jill McFarland, MariBen Ramsey, and Randi Shade.

These community leaders are personally committed to the Campaign and assist in opening doors to foundations and other funding opportunities to make Oak Springs a reality.
On behalf of our Board and staff, we thank you for all you do!

Housing First Is Changing Lives

Living on the streets, Jennifer struggled to maintain her mental health and cycled in and out of local psychiatric hospitals. Due to her constant moving around, she had a strained relationship with her daughters. Having a stable home has helped Jennifer reestablish her relationship with her children.


Want to learn more about our services?
Schedule a tour and invite your friends!
A one-hour Housing First Oak Springs tour will give you the opportunity to see, first-hand, how our staff engages individuals experiencing chronic homelessness in services, places them in housing, and offers continue rehabilitation support services.
All tours are by appointment only.
If you would like to schedule a tour, please contact Jodie Eldridge.
We are committed to fulfilling our mission and depend on the generosity of friends like Mr. Rathgeber to help us do so.  We hope you will join us in strengthening our community by helping people reach their full potential by providing safe and stable housing.

Ellen Richards
Chief Strategy Officer
Austin Travis County Integral Care
Housing First Oak Springs is a project of Austin Travis County Integral Care