Bartlett Housing Solutions is fortunate to be located in such a community-focused location like Morgantown, West Virginia, that has a number of organizations working to ensure no one goes hungry in our community. The following is a list and schedule of free meals.
Trinity Episcopal Church “Red Doors”
Schedule: Monday – Friday, 11am – 12:15pm
Located at: 247 Willey Street, Morgantown, WV
Schedule: Monday – Friday, 4pm – 5pm
Located at: 1246 University Avenue, Morgantown, WV
First Presbyterian Church
Schedule: Sunday – 8am – 9:30am
Located at: 456 Spruce Street, Morgantown, WV
St. John’s Catholic Church “Sara’s Table”
Schedule: Sunday – 11:30am
Located at: 1481 University Avenue, Morgantown, WV
Circle of Friends – (see locations below)
Schedule: Saturday & Sunday, 4pm – 5:30pm
1st & 3rd weekend: Foundry Church
432 High Street, Morgantown, WV
2nd & 5th weekend: Wesley UMC
503 North High Street, Morgantown, WV
4th weekend: The Cue
222 High Street, Morgantown, WV
There is a large and growing evidence base demonstrating that Housing-First is an effective solution to homelessness. Consumers in a Housing-First model access housing faster and are more likely to remain stably housed. This is true for both PSH (Permanent Supportive Housing) and rapid re-housing programs. PSH has a long-term housing retention rate of up to 98 percent. Studies have shown that rapid re-housing helps people exit homelessness quickly—in one study, an average of two months—and remain housed. A variety of studies have shown that between 75 percent and 91 percent of households remain housed a year after being rapidly re-housed.
More extensive studies have been completed on PSH finding that clients report an increase in perceived levels of autonomy, choice, and control in Housing-First programs. A majority of clients are found to participate in the optional supportive services provided, often resulting in greater housing stability. Clients using supportive services are more likely to participate in job training programs, attend school, discontinue substance use, have fewer instances of domestic violence, and spend fewer days hospitalized than those not participating.
Finally, permanent supportive housing has been found to be cost-efficient. Providing access to housing generally results in cost savings for communities because housed people are less likely to use emergency services, including hospitals, jails, and emergency shelter than those who are homeless. One study found an average cost saving on emergency services of $31,545 per person housed in a Housing-First program over the course of two years. Another study showed that a Housing-First program could cost up to $23,000 less per consumer per year than a shelter program.
At Bartlett Housing Solutions, we have implemented the ‘Housing-First’ initiative in our efforts to end homelessness. Since 2017, when our organization first incorporated this initiative into our operations, we have seen an improvement in results across the board. But there are still questions as to ‘What is Housing-First?’. The following information is provided courtesy of the National Alliance To End Homelessness.
What is Housing-First?
Housing-First is a homeless assistance approach that prioritizes providing permanent housing to people experiencing homelessness, thus ending their homelessness and serving as a platform from which they can pursue personal goals and improve their quality of life. This approach is guided by the belief that people need basic necessities like food and a place to live before attending to anything less critical, such as getting a job, budgeting properly, or attending to substance use issues. Additionally, Housing-First is based on the theory that client choice is valuable in housing selection and supportive service participation, and that exercising that choice is likely to make a client more successful in remaining housed and improving their life.
How is Housing-First different from other approaches?
Housing-First does not require people experiencing homelessness to address all of their problems including behavioral health problems or to graduate through a series of services programs before they can access housing. Housing-First does not mandate participation in services either before obtaining housing or in order to retain housing. The Housing-First approach views housing as the foundation for life improvement and enables access to permanent housing without prerequisites or conditions beyond those of a typical renter. Supportive services are offered to support people with housing stability and individual well-being, but participation is not required as services have been found to be more effective when a person chooses to engage. Other approaches do make such requirements in order for a person to obtain and retain housing.
Who can be helped by Housing-First?
A Housing-First approach can benefit both homeless families and individuals with any degree of service needs. The flexible and responsive nature of a Housing-First approach allows it to be tailored to help anyone. As such, a Housing-First approach can be applied to help end homelessness for a household who became homeless due to a temporary personal or financial crisis and has limited service needs, only needing help accessing and securing permanent housing. At the same time, Housing-First has been found to be a particularly effective approach to ending homelessness for high need populations, such as chronically homeless individuals.
What are the elements of a Housing-First program? Housing-First programs often provide rental assistance that varies in duration depending on the household’s needs. Consumers sign a standard lease and are able to access supportive services as necessary to help them do so. A variety of voluntary services may be used to promote housing stability and well-being during and following housing placement.
Two common program models follow the Housing-First approach but differ in implementation. Permanent supportive housing (PSH) is targeted to individuals and families with chronic illnesses, disabilities, mental health issues, or substance use disorders who have experienced long-term or repeated homelessness. It provides long-term rental assistance and supportive services.
A second program model, rapid re-housing, is employed for a wide variety of individuals and families. It provides short-term rental assistance and services. The goals are to help people obtain housing quickly, increase self-sufficiency, and remain housed. The Core Components of rapid re-housing—housing identification, rent and move-in assistance, and case management and services—operationalize Housing-First principals.
Bartlett Housing Solutions works hard to provide as many support services and resources for our clients as possible. In order to do this, we must follow the various rules and regulations set by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
As one of the main governing organizations for regulating and supporting the fight against homelessness, HUD provides the organization a standard for determining if an individual is homeless.
The following is HUD’s current definition of Homeless:
People who are living in a place not meant for human habitation, in emergency shelter, in transitional housing, or are exiting an institution where they temporarily resided. The only significant change from existing practice is that people will be considered homeless if they are exiting an institution where they resided for up to 90 days (it was previously 30 days), and was in the shelter or a place not meant for human habitation immediately prior to entering that institution.
Imminent Risk of Homelessness
People who are losing their primary nighttime residence, which may include a motel or hotel or a doubled-up situation, within 14 days and lack resources or support networks to remain in housing. HUD had previously allowed people who were being displaced within 7 days to be considered homeless. The proposed regulation also describes specific documentation requirements for this category.
Homeless under other Federal statutes
Families with children or unaccompanied youth who are unstably housed and likely to continue in that state. This is a new category of homelessness, and it applies to families with children or unaccompanied youth who have not had a lease or ownership interest in a housing unit in the last 60 or more days, have had two or more moves in the last 60 days, and who are likely to continue to be unstably housed because of disability or multiple barriers to employment.
Fleeing/Attempting to Flee Domestic Violence
People who are fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence, have no other residence and lack the resources or support networks to obtain other permanent housing. This category is similar to the current practice regarding people who are fleeing domestic violence.
If you have any questions regarding the definition of homelessness, or if you qualify for one of these categories, please do not hesitate to contact our team at Bartlett Housing Solutions.
To learn more about the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), please visit www.HUD.gov.
Bartlett Housing Solutions, in conjunction with the West Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness, has worked to provide a five-step program when looking for housing. Those steps include:
If you have any questions regarding your search for housing in the Morgantown area, be sure to talk to one of the Bartlett Housing Solutions team members, or visit the website for West Virginia Coalition to End Homelessness at https://www.wvceh.org/.
Bartlett Housing Solutions understands that for many of us, our pets are more than just animals, they are family. Often, these companions are the reason our clients are able to push through a tough night or challenging time. Because of this, we have taken the steps to be a pet-friendly organization and therefore allow pets in our programs.
However, our team still holds the safety and comfort of our clients as our top priority. We need to ensure that there are no issues or safety concerns for others as a result of the temperament or aggressiveness of your animal.
Therefore, if you are homeless and have a pet; we recommend that you contact us before checking in so that we can plan accordingly.
Additionally, participants with pets are required to show proof of current vaccination records, keep their pets on a leash, take proper care of and clean up after their pet and be willing to follow our Pet Policy while staying in our programs.
Alan Brockman, Sigma Phi Delta, President says, “It is an honor to be recognized by Bartlett Housing Solutions! Sigma Phi Delta has been volunteering with Bartlett for several years, starting Downtown (when you were still called Bartlett House) and recently moving to the West Run location. Through Bartlett, our Brothers have had the opportunity to give back to the community and create meaningful experiences.”
The Sigma Phi Delta Fraternity has, since its founding on April 11, 1924 at the University of Southern California, has been a Professional-Social Fraternity of Engineers. We are Professional in that, unlike the General Fraternity, we admit to membership only students enrolled or working in a curriculum, or program, leading toward a degree in engineering; and that we encourage our members to give the fullest support to the faculty of the Colleges and Schools of Engineering throughout North America. Each week we are at Bartlett Housing Solutions, and we find ourselves helping Rick Green, the Facilities Manager in many ways; serving food, cleaning facilities, doing yard work, organizing supplies, and even renovating units for their next resident.
As an organization, we are striving to set an expectation for our younger members to continually give back to their community. We appreciate the continued flexibility and opportunity that Bartlett House provides to us every year!”
Bartlett Housing is so grateful to be the recipients of component funds of Your Community Foundation of North Central West Virginia, Inc. (YCF) from The Women’s Giving Circle of North Central West Virginia (WGC). Awards are presented annually to several local charitable organizations, and this year we were fortunate enough to receive funding!
WGC funds will provide the opportunity for women who have been financially abused to gain the skills they need to get back on their feet and move toward a more prosperous future. Class are being held weekly for our residents and are specially tailored to the needs of each resident.
Bartlett also received funds from a private, local foundation to support our anti-bullying program and monthly children’s birthday parties. Weekly classes help kids, and their parent learns how to identify and prevent bullying. Additional funds from this private foundation support The Bartlett Birthday Project, a monthly event designed to ensure all of our children have a great birthday. The Bartlett Birthday Project is the brain-child of Hannah Trickett (pictured right with party goer’s), a local community member dedicated to making sure that all of our children have cupcakes, gifts, games, and FUN on their special day. If you would like to help Hannah and our kids have a memorable birthday, please contact Hannah on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/hannah.chamberstrickett.
Executive Director and CEO, Keri DeMasi, along with Lauren Fredrick of the WV Coalition to End Homelessness (WVCEH) were elected by the State System Leaders to serve as our State’s Co-Sponsors of this challenge. Keri and Lauren recruited WV’s state team who traveled to South Carolina for the launch of the #100daychallenge. While there the team elected their team leaders. Bartlett Housing CoC Case Manager Lead Edwards and WVCEH Outreach Worker Larry Seawell were chosen for this role. Bartlett Housing is proud and honored to be part of this challenge aimed at eliciting systemic and sustainable change.
The 100-Day goal includes significantly decreasing the number of youth at-risk and homeless people and includes housing marginalized LGBTQ individuals. The focus includes ensuring racial parity, preventing youth from exiting public systems without long-term housing, securing job opportunities and strengthening the infrastructure of existing systems to better deal with this rising epidemic.
The Rapid Results Institute (RRI) is a not for profit organization that partners with other innovative organizations to help solve complex societal issues. RRI has helped organize and provide consultative services to help choreograph our 100-Day Challenge. RRI, in consultation with HUD, has determined that the 100-Day Challenge will be postponed and resume on May 4, 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This date is subject to change depending on how the situation evolves.
Though our ability to house folks has slowed during COVID-19, the 100-Day Challenge Team still wants to make sure homeless service providers, community partners, concerned citizens, and consumers have the most up-to-date information from our federal partners. The staff members at WVCEH have been working diligently to compile resource materials for four colleagues working on the ground to serve one of our most vulnerable populations. For more information and to download materials from the CDC, WVDHHR, USICH, and HUD. To find copies to views or download please go to WVCEH website at https://www.wvceh.org/news-updates/113-covid-19-resources.html.
The team is still hard at work to ensure we are in the best possible position to reach our goal to safely and stably house homeless and at-risk youth and young adults in North Central WV once we get through the pandemic. We will continue to meet and are still taking referrals through the WVCEH intake line at 1-833-722-2014. We are still seeking additional units and landlords that are willing to support our efforts in Harrison, Marion, and Monongalia County. If you are a landlord or know someone who is a landlord please contact Elizabeth Edwards at 304-439-5834, firstname.lastname@example.org or Larry Seawell at 304-476-5557, email@example.com.
The WVU School of Nursing https://nursing.wvu.edu/ remains committed to providing the highest level of undergraduate professional nursing education while expanding opportunities for graduate education. To this end, many of the faculty continue to practice as healthcare providers in clinics, hospitals, and other nonprofit organizations. This “real-world” experience gives the faculty (and students) unique perspectives because they are actively caring for patients. For the past eight years, Ms. Susan Pinto, a faculty member of WVU School of Nursing, has been providing individual and group health-related services to Bartlett Housing Solutions. This January, Susan informed Bartlett staff of her decision to retire at the end of the semester.
“Susan Pinto serves as a brilliant example of how a gifted educator can foster and nurture a program, so the needs of the community and those of higher education come together and produce quality outcomes for real people,” says Joe Sengewalt, Bartlett’s Client Services Manager. “Susan and her team have provided invaluable medical services to our residents since 2012. At any given time, we have upwards of 50—60 residents at Nitor Suites and Apartments located at 10 West Run Road, Morgantown, WV. Many of these individuals have highly complex needs, with co-occurring mental health and substance abuse issues. Susan’s team works seamlessly with our staff, making themselves available to all our residents each week while school is in session. She provides a high level of professional care coupled with a sincere empathy for the underserved population we serve. Her engagement with our clients includes assessment and referral for health care and serving as an advocate when there is an issue with access to care. Susan also collaborates with various health professions faculty and offers opioid education at Bartlett Housing Solutions staff’s request.
“The WVU School of Nursing class “Nursing 411” is a comprehensive theoretical introduction to community health nursing paired with clinical experience focused on promoting health and preventing disease in multiple populations. The class culminates in a Capstone project that addresses an identified community health need. At Bartlett Housing Nitor Suites and Apartments, Susan leads students as they work with our residents each week. With an emphasis on self-empowerment, students encourage residents to develop ongoing relationships with their primary care providers and the health care system. She helps to coordinate inter-professional health-related screenings and education, and provides direct, ongoing oversight to these nursing students while they are on site. Students serve various roles in our setting with a focus on health education and socialization. Based on assessed needs, together, they work with residents to develop self-care strategies.
Susan Pinto is one of those rare, high caliber individuals who consistently demonstrate such a high level of dedication to our residents that she has become an integral part of our client programming. So much so that we have come to think of her as a part of the Bartlett Housing “family.” We will sorely miss Susan, but know her legacy includes having designed and developed a robust, evidence-based program that will continue to impact our resident’s health for years to come. We are deeply indebted to Susan for the essential services she has provided to our professional staff and especially our residents. Our thanks also go out to Dr. Toni DiChiacchio, Assistant Dean at the School of Nursing, for agreeing to work with us to find a way to continue Susan’s work in the future.
WVU School of Nursing students and faculty are an integral part of the community and take pride in providing valuable resources that improve the lives of people living all over the world. Along with the program at Bartlett, the School has faculty-led clinics, including a local diabetes clinic, and provides mental health services to those who need it. For more information on these community-based activities, please go to https://nursing.wvu.edu/community-global-engagement/.