AWS Public Sector Blog

Tag: homelessness

hand with chalk drawing family and house on chalkboard

Using the cloud to get rental assistance quickly to those in need

Even before the pandemic, many people were rent burdened, with a quarter of renters paying more than half their income on rent. US Congress approved two bills containing $45 billion for emergency rental assistance programs (ERAP) that states and local governments can use to support people in need. Distributing these funds quickly and efficiently requires local agencies to rapidly design and deploy new engagement models, programs, and workflows that are easy to use, that can quickly scale up to meet demand, and are flexible enough to adjust to changes in federal and local requirements. Learn how these AWS customers and partners are leveraging the cloud to quickly launch and distribute benefit assistance programs like emergency rental assistance.

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Baltimore harbor at sunset

Addressing housing barriers with the cloud: Baltimore launches My Digital Data Locker

Removing the barriers to rehousing, especially for those chronically homeless, is a critical part of a community’s efforts to combat homelessness. This month, the City of Baltimore is launching My Digital Data Locker, an innovative cloud-based platform that gives people who are experiencing homelessness a secure place to manage digital copies of vital documents. This service reduces one of the key barriers to housing for people experiencing homelessness: vital document storage and access. The solution uses the cloud.

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Imagine NPO 2020

Where mission outcomes and technology come together for impact: IMAGINE: Nonprofit Online recap

At the fifth annual AWS IMAGINE Nonprofit event—the first online—nonprofits from around the world shared stories of how technology came together in support of their mission to impact the communities they serve. The annual event brings together nonprofit leaders, technologists, and innovators to discuss how technology can help drive a positive impact for both people and the planet. Nonprofit speakers shared their journeys to solve for big challenges and how they’ve achieved their desired outcomes. Read on for more on what you missed.

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Photo by Tom Rumble on Unsplash

Bridging data silos to house and serve the homeless

Efforts to prevent and combat homelessness are limited by the lack of comprehensive data about people experiencing homelessness. This makes it difficult for states to identify trends and emerging needs to respond and make data-driven decisions about the effective deployment of resources. The cloud can help bridge information silos. Read on for examples of how states use the cloud to bridge data silos and better serve the homeless.

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Social housing

Using the cloud to improve access to social housing, rental assistance, and other social services

Demand for housing continues to increase, with demand outweighing supply. Nonprofits, including social housing organizations, work towards the mission of providing access to safe and affordable housing, rental assistance, and social services to low-income individuals and families in need. These organizations also play a critical role in supporting the elderly and vulnerable. And with homelessness projected to increase by 40-45 percent this year in the United States, these services are more in demand than ever. The cloud can help nonprofits that serve those in need while also driving innovation, saving costs, and speeding delivery of services. Learn how these AWS customers and partners are modernizing the way that mission-driven organizations provide housing assistance.

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Saguaro National Park

A streamlined, mobile-first approach to service delivery for counties and states

The COVID-19 pandemic magnified the health and financial strain in communities across the country. Before the pandemic hit, Wildfire, a state association for Community Action Agencies, was working with Prefix, an AWS Partner Network Technology Partner, to develop a cloud-based solution for utility and rental assistance. When the City of Phoenix requested they support the distribution of $20 million CARES Act funds, they shifted their resources and existing infrastructure and, in a matter of weeks, stood up a repeatable public-facing solution.

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public housing

How AWS customers and partners are supporting the homelessness crisis response during COVID-19

As the COVID-19 outbreak began, advocates and public health officials grew concerned for the more than half a million people experiencing homelessness. Homeless populations are particularly vulnerable because they have higher rates of serious underlying health problems, generally lack access to quality health care, and have no way to self-quarantine. This prompted many communities to implement interventions to reduce the risk of exposure for people experiencing homelessness. AWS customers and partners have acted with compassion and care to assist the most vulnerable individuals across our communities. Here are a few ways they are using cloud technology to support those in need.

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Streetlives

Creating more customer-centric social service experiences with the power of the cloud

Streetlives, a nonprofit organization based in New York City, uses technology to host a community-built web app for people who are homeless, communities considered vulnerable, and social service providers in New York City (NYC). Streetlives is a community-built mobile website that enables people who are homeless or in poverty to easily find, rate, and recommend social services across New York City. Adam Bard, Founder of Streetlives, explains how AWS Promotional Credits helps the organization deliver up-to-date, validated social service information to the communities of New York City.

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From Kenya to space: Fix This podcast episode #07

Preserving artifacts, going to space, and ending homelessness: the Fix This podcast February round up

This month, the Fix This podcast focused on how technology is used to preserve ancient artifacts, develop the pipeline of scientists that fuel our trips to space, and end homelessness. Listen to episodes seven and eight, featuring interviews with Digital Divide Data (DDD), NASA Jet Propulsion Lab (NASA JPL), Community Solutions, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) expert on homelessness, Jessie Metcalf.

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The Tableau dashboard features a run chart for veteran homelessness in Cook County, Illinois and the reductions they have driven over the course of a year.

Vision + data: Five lessons in ending homelessness

Since 2015, 11 communities in the United States have reached “functional zero” – effectively ending chronic or veteran homelessness and demonstrating that although homelessness is a complex challenge, it is solvable. By reaching this milestone, communities in Built for Zero, a national initiative comprised of more than 70 U.S. communities, have shown that real-time, personal-level data can empower organizations to respond to the homelessness challenge. These communities measurably ended homelessness when they followed these best practices.

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