Housing Assistance and Supportive Services in Memphis: Best Practices for Serving High Needs Populations. CONCLUSIONS


While there is substantial evidence that points to the negative consequences of living in distressed, high poverty public housing, the evidence on best practices for improving outcomes is more mixed. There is clear evidence from MTO and HOPE VI that relocation alone can bring about important improvements in well-being in terms of housing quality, neighborhood safety, and reductions in anxiety. There is also emerging evidence that high-touch, intensive case management can help promote better socioeconomic outcomes and improved mental and physical health for adults and that targeted employment programs can increase employment rates and income. However, it is less clear how to bring these promising initiatives to scale to serve the large numbers of vulnerable families who could potentially benefit. Further, there is a clear need for two-generation approaches that can help break the cycle for children and youth so that they do not need the same level of assistance as their parents. Robust evaluations of promising strategies like Choice and Promise Neighborhoods, HOST, FUP, and other housing plus services initiatives are underway and will provide more evidence about what may work for these vulnerable families.

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