Here are some local resources that might be valuable for Two Way Street vendors, customers, and collaborators.
Where To Turn in Albuquerque – A Call for Help in Building a Resource Directory
-To establish a dynamic information hub for Albuquerque and Bernalillo County’s Continuum of Care
-To establish an easily accessible, easily updateable resource directory (in both print and digital forms) for local stakeholder’s residing on both the supply and demand sides of the economy
-To coordinate a referral system between various local organizations and entities that are working to stabilize low-income and homeless individuals and provide them with ladders of upward mobility
-To utilize the process of developing a resource directory as a catalyst for applying for grants that support Two Way Street’s efforts to become an information hub
Two Way Street hopes to be a hub of local information. In the process of reaching out to service providers, emergency shelters, local stakeholders and affordable housing developers, Two Way Street has identified the City of Albuquerque and Bernalillo County’s need for establishing a better coordinated, more cohesive Continuum of Care — or collection of local service providers — for our most vulnerable community members. As identified by the New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness’ study, A Community Response to Homelessness in Albuquerque: 2013-2017, “Existing services are fragmented and are driven by different forces, especially different missions and different means of allocating resources. To overcome the existing fragmentation of services will require a collaborative effort among all service providers, funding agencies, policy makers and community members to align existing services with a common mission of preventing and ending homelessness.”
While the New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness’ Coordinated Assessment System has proven to be an effective common assessment tool in assessing the housing and service needs of local individuals experiencing homelessness, there is still a great need for helping these individuals navigate the region’s complex Continuum of Care to become fully stabilized.
One way that Two Way Street wants to help individuals navigate this system is to develop a resource directory. Two Way Street would not be the first street paper in the country to take on this task; one of the most comprehensive directories created by a street paper is by The Contributor based out of Nashville, Tennessee. The Contributor’s resource directory, called Where to Turn In Nashville, can be purchased in bulk by service providers, emergency shelters, and other members of their city’s Continuum of Care. Each of these entities then give them out to their case managers and clients.
Two Way Street cannot develop this directory on its own. This effort will require a great deal of coordination between participating organizations and agencies to compile contact information, hours of operation, eligibility requirements, and other information needed to support clients in navigating the region’s continuum of care.
As Two Way Street moves forward with this initiative, we look forward to future discussions with the New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness and the Albuquerque Strategic Collaborative to explore strategies for developing our resource directory. We believe that, with support from the right resources, partnerships, and sponsors, our organization will be able to fill one of the biggest gaps in our local continuum of care: holistic information infrastructure needed to lift individuals out of poverty and provide them access with a ladder of upward mobility.