CSH and Cross Sector Partner to Support High-Risk Youth in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY— The Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) and Cross Sector Innovations (Cross Sector) have received funding from the Arnall Family Foundation (AFF) and the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) to work with service providers, investors and state agencies to develop and implement a supportive housing demonstration for high-risk youth in Oklahoma.

“The Arnall Family Foundation is proud to partner with CSH and Cross Sector Innovations to bring innovative housing solutions for transition-age youth to Oklahoma,” said Sue Ann Arnall, president of AFF. “This population, which is often overlooked, will continue to struggle unless someone intervenes in their life and helps them get the support they need to be successful adults.”

Supportive housing is an innovative, evidence-based model that combines affordable housing with needed services to help individuals who face the most complex challenges live with stability and autonomy. Youth who are connected to supportive housing achieve rates of housing stability ranging from 43 percent to 80 percent. Participants are also more likely to achieve better outcomes related to education, employment, mental and physical health, and substance abuse.

The Oklahoma initiative will focus on youth ages 17 and older who are transitioning from state services such as juvenile affairs or child welfare and are at high risk of experiencing homelessness or future justice-involvement.

“What is so crucial is Cross Sector is committed to addressing the needs of our youth before they become adults trapped in downward spirals and endless cycles of despair,” said Deborah De Santis, CEO and President of CSH. “Through unique financing and the support of the Arnall Family Foundation and CNCS, at-risk youth will have a chance to find stability and recovery in a home of their own while also accessing the services that will place them on paths to a better future.”
CSH and Cross Sector plan to sustain the initiative using pay-for-success contracting—an innovative, outcomes-based approach in which private funders assume the risk by providing upfront capital, and the government provides funding only if pre-determined success measures are achieved. If the intervention is not successful, the government pays nothing.

“Pay-for-Success is an example of an innovative public-private partnership that can improve outcomes for our families, friends and neighbors while also reducing costs,” said Ed Long, Founder and Principal of Cross Sector. “Oklahoma has the potential to lead the nation in using social innovation to maximize impact and improve our national rankings across a variety of outcome areas. We are honored to partner with CSH, AFF and others on creative solutions.”

The initiative will focus on a number of outcomes for participants, including the degree to which participants maintain stable housing and therefore avoid costlier jail stays, incarceration, hospitalizations, or homelessness.

For more information, contact Ed Long at ed.long@crosssectorinnovations.org.

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