What Is Housing First?

An overview of Heading Home’s approach
to housing security work.

The Housing First approach to reducing homelessness aims to provide permanent housing to those experiencing homelessness. Unlike other approaches, Housing First does not require any preconditions necessary to receive housing. It directly addresses the root of homelessness with a solution: A place to live. 

By providing housing in addition to other assistance, people can find a sense of stability while focusing on other needs in their life. This may include getting a job, attending rehab for substance use issues, or any other needed support services or programs. In many cases, they continue to work with agencies that provide these support services.

Heading Home of South Central Indiana supports the Housing First model and prioritizes providing permanent housing to those experiencing homelessness. 

The Housing First approach helps Heading Home achieve its three primary goals: Making homelessness rare, brief and non-repeating. Investing in strategies to prevent homelessness helps make homelessness rare. Investing in strategies that rapidly move homelessness individuals and families into homes helps make homelessness brief. And investing in supportive services to improve the likelihood of long-term housing stability helps ensure that homelessness is non-repeating. 

To learn more about Housing First, check out this video of Lia Hicks, senior program manager for the Corporation for Supportive Housing, who explains why the approach matters.

Housing First is an evidence-based approach. It works.