What Are Smart Solutions?

Smart solutions are proven to be effective, and are:

  • Evidence-based: Based on data and experience demonstrating effectiveness in a real world setting.
  • Cost-effective: Use resources efficiently, producing a net savings to the community.
  • Produce measurable results: Show verifiable progress toward reducing homelessness and the impacts of homelessness on the community.
  • Benefit the entire community: Reduce impacts and burdens on the greater community while promoting respect for each person involved.

There are many examples of proven smart solutions that are likely to help us here in Santa Cruz County. A few that are working elsewhere in California and the nation, and are beginning to take hold here are:

  • Permanent Supportive Housing: permanently moves chronically homeless individuals with a variety of health issues into housing while reducing burdens on emergency services, medical and justice systems.
  • Homelessness Prevention: for a very modest cost, keeps a family or individual in their current housing — before the downward spiral (and community costs) of homelessness begins.
  • Transitional Employment: begins the process of a return to selfsufficiency and longer-term employment while generating income for the individual in a supportive training environment.
  • Special interventions for youth aging out of foster care: provides focused and age-appropriate support for a population that is highly vulnerable to homelessness due to lack of family support.