KCRHA’s Outreach team successfully hosted their first Outreach Symposium on October 21st, 2022! The group included over 100 people representing contracted and uncontracted outreach workers, emergency shelter providers, government partners, and executive leadership from community service providers.
What is outreach?
Outreach meets people experiencing homelessness where they are, in order to build trust and create a bridge to services. Outreach workers engage face-to-face with people living unsheltered in places like cars, RVs, parks, encampments, and abandoned buildings, making frequent attempts to establish a relationship in a flexible, empathetic, respectful, non-judgmental and trauma-informed way. Outreach workers often have lived expertise, and may also be specially trained in trauma-informed care and de-escalation techniques. Outreach workers help ensure that basic needs are met and connect people to shelters, housing, and supportive services.
Goals & Next Steps
The goal of the symposium was to provide an in-person dedicated opportunity to connect our partners in outreach, actively listen, and build stronger relationships with one another. The full-day event featured presentations on the Authority’s plans for the future of outreach, funding opportunities, data, and a phenomenal panel which unpacked the unique experience of outreach workers’ day-to-day jobs.
Moving forward, attendees are equipped with the technical skills to use the most updated data tools, have stronger relationships with each other and with the RHA, and know that their colleagues and community are here to support and appreciate their work.
As always, we will continue to listen, learn, and improve. Thank you to our event organizers from the RHA and to everyone who does the hard work of people helping people.