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OPEN MINDS Program Profile: Built For Zero By Community Solutions – Using Real-Time Data To Measurably End Homelessness

Launched in 2015, Community Solutions’ Built for Zero initiative works with more than 80 communities across the U.S. to measurably end homelessness.
November 10, 2020

Launched in 2015, Community Solutions’ Built for Zero initiative works with more than 80 communities across the U.S. to measurably end homelessness. The network of cities and counties follow a data-driven approach based on the core elements of the “Built for Zero methodology.” This includes using real-time, person-specific data; building a “command center” with a shared goal of achieving functional zero; and using the data to redesign a community’s homeless response and strategically target resources.

Founded in 2011, Community Solutions is a New York City-based non-profit organization. It works with communities across the United States to create a lasting end to homelessness.

Program Model

Communities that choose to participate in the Built for Zero initiative receive support from an “improvement advisor” at Community Solutions. They also receive coaching from the Community Solutions data team and access to support data visualization software from the Tableau Foundation.

Community Solutions staff work with Built for Zero communities to implement a methodology that helps them measurably reduce homelessness for a specific population (e.g., military veterans, chronically homeless, youth, families, etc.). First, they create a command center to unify local agencies around the shared goal of ending homelessness for a single population.

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