Program Models

There is no single solution to homelessness, but there are models we know work, and it would be a waste of time and resources for leaders to tackle homelessness without drawing on lessons from countries and cities who have already done so effectively. Success includes naming a clear, measurable target and building a system whose long-term purpose is to end, rather than manage, homelessness. Service provision is more effective in cities where services are coordinated, targeted to those who need them, and informed by evolving evidence about what works. Certain approaches to prevention, accommodation, and emergency services are especially effective when integrated into the overall network of services in a city, with local input and adaptation.

A system’s balance of investment in prevention, emergency services, and housing will depend on context. In a system moving toward ending homelessness, fewer resources will go to emergency services, with the balance shifting toward housing and prevention. In this section you can find information on strategies for prevention, emergency response and accommodation and services.