Reaching Home: Canada’s Homelessness Strategy is a federal program that provides funding directly to communities to help them address local homelessness priorities using a more systems-based and data-driven approach. This approach was adopted in recognition that preventing and reducing homelessness requires access to safe and adequate housing, a high degree of coordination across funders and community organizations, as well as meaningful collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous partners.
This e-course was developed to support communities with completing their Reaching Home Community Homelessness Report (CHR).
What is the CHR?
The CHR is an annual Reaching Home reporting deliverable that supports communities to prevent and reduce homelessness using a more coordinated, systems-based and data-driven response. The CHR is designed to support local discussions and decision-making, using all of the information about homelessness currently available at the community level. Communities are encouraged to use their CHR data to develop clear plans of action that help them to reach their homelessness reduction targets and to leverage the collective efforts of service providers working across the community, regardless of how they are funded.
More specifically, through their CHR, communities self-assess their progress with Reaching Home implementation, which includes the following key components:
- community-level governance and meaningful collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous partners;
- coordinated service delivery (Coordinated Access);
- use of a Homelessness Management Information System (HMIS); and,
- an outcomes-based approach (tracking community-level outcomes and progress against targets using a Unique Identifier or By-Name List, referred to as a List).
Who is required to complete the CHR?
As identified in the Reaching Home Directives, communities receiving funding from the Designated Communities stream (outside of Quebec) are required to submit a CHR each year. This requirement also applies to the three territorial capitals funded through the Territorial Homelessness stream.
Communities in Quebec and those receiving either Indigenous Homelessness or Rural and Remote Homelessness stream funding are not required to complete a CHR.
In communities that have both the Designated Communities and Indigenous Homelessness streams the Designated Communities Community Entity must engage with the Indigenous Homelessness Community Entity and Community Advisory Board at the earliest opportunity to confirm interest in collaborating on the CHR and jointly determine the nature of the collaboration.
What reporting tools are available for the CHR as part of this e-course?
A number of tools are available to support communities with completing the 2022-23 reporting cycle.
Essential tools for all communities
These are the tools that all communities need for completing their CHR:
- The 2022-23 CHR reporting template is use by communities to submit their CHR to the federal government. Note that communities in BC have their own template (see below).
- The 2022-23 Community Homelessness Report Reference Guide and Annex B: Questions provides section-by-section instructions on how to complete, submit and reflect on the CHR. Throughout the document, references are made to tips, definitions and additional tools. The Reference Guide also highlights key changes made this year and gives an overview of the CHR, Coordinated Access and the outcomes-based approach under Reaching Home.
- The Questions and Answers document compiles questions identified by communities over the past reporting cycles. It will be updated to reflect new questions and answers over time.
Additional essential tools for communities in British Columbia
Recognizing the context that is impacting the implementation of Reaching Home in British Columbia, the 2022-23 CHR was tailored for them.
- The 2022-23 CHR reporting template for BC communities is the tool that communities in BC use to submit their CHR to the federal government.
- A Reporting Cycle Overview Document and training webinar describe why and how the 2022-23 CHR was tailored.
Training for communities
A number of training webinars were developed to further support communities with completing their CHR, including:
- The Overview for Communities training webinar covers the CHR basics, new elements for this year, and roles and responsibilities; and,
- Training webinars covering each of the four sections of the CHR.
A number of optional tools are also available to support communities with completing specific aspects of their 2022-23 CHR. Guidance is provided in each tool on why and how it can be used.
The Word version of the CHR questions workbook can be used by CEs as a draft version of their CHR.
Three optional worksheets provide additional guidance on completing specific questions of the CHR:
- Reflecting on the Changing Response to Homelessness helps communities answer question 1.2, which asks about the impact of changes to the approach to addressing homelessness.
- Indigenous Partners in Your Community helps communities with answering questions 1.3 to 1.6 on collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous partners.
- Understanding Community-Level Data helps communities answer the optional question 3.22, which asks how data from the List compare to other community-level data sources.
The Checklist for CEs for Completing the 2022-2023 CHR provides a checklist of activities throughout the CHR lifecycle that can be used by communities to help them prepare for, complete and submit their CHR, as well ideas for using their CHR results throughout the year.
A cross-referencing tool describes how the CHR questions, Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness Scorecards and Reaching Home Directives intersect.
Other e-courses to consult
- Community Homelessness Report: HIFIS Report was developed to support communities with completing Section 4 of their CHR using the CHR HIFIS Report.
- Explaining Coordinated Access and the Outcomes-based Approach under Reaching Home webcast provides an overview of these two components of the federal Reaching Home program, with a focus on its minimum requirements
- Reaching Home Community Homelessness Report: Results was developed to highlight results from the Reaching Home Community Homelessness Reports (CHR).