Organizational Staff Surveys
To Get Started. . . Organizational Staff Surveys
Assess the Extent of the Problem
Organizations and institutions that work directly with low-income families and children often suspect that the incidence of housing distress among their clients / patients / students is much higher than their actual records might indicate. The Housing Stability Organizational Survey will help you to find out more about the housing conditions of families you serve and challenges to staff in responding. Front-line staff often become aware of the prevalence and types of housing problems impacting the children, youth, and families they serve long before key decision-makers. They are also often most knowledgeable about the types of housing interventions most needed in a particular community and the difficulty in accessing resources and services.
The rationale behind this approach is the fact that many mainstream and community-based services providers do not collect information regarding indicators of housing instability—other than basic housing information.
Additionally, a housing crisis may occur long after an intake and/or enrollment interview is conducted in which questions about housing has been documented.
The Organizational Staff Survey
The first steps:
1. The Organizational Staff Survey can be administered to direct services staff by SurveyMonkey, an online system that takes very little time to complete.
2. If you prefer to conduct the survey by hard copy, we can do that too.
3. Responses to questions are based primarily upon the individual and personal experiences of each staff.
4. This type of data collection does not represent a scientific collection of data from client/patient/student files, but instead helps to assess whether or not there is actually enough of a problem to merit further research into the issue.
5. Focus groups by conference call (or in-person) with key staff and other stakeholders help to provide additional insight and information.
6. We then write a report with recommendations for action. The cumulative information from diverse service systems helps to guide and inform the Housing Stability Assessment Initiative as a whole.
Schools, healthcare and mental healthcare systems, child & family services providers:
If you would like to conduct an online survey with staff to identify the extent of housing instability, housing insecurity, inadequate housing, or homelessness among the families and/or children you serve, please contact us to discuss your specific needs.
Examples of staff responses to the question:
Based on your experiences, what do you think is the impact of housing instability on the health and well-being of the children, youth, and families that you serve?
- It has impact on the child’s school attendance. It also reflects on the well-being of the child.
- When families do not have a stable place to stay, they cannot concentrate in school, they cannot sleep well, and they often become depressed, which affects the child even more.
- When basic needs are not met, it affects a youth’s ability to concentrate on educational and employment goals, which in turn impacts their ability to reach self-sufficiency.
- The consistency of a safe, stable environment gives children the ability to thrive, regardless of other circumstances.
- Housing instability is one of the biggest barriers in achieving program contracts. The focus of the case becomes specific to housing, as it is a basic necessity and a time-consuming case management goal.
- Housing instability has an enormous effect on the family unit. Whether the effects are expressed through a parent’s frustration or the child’s behavior at school or programming, families are being severely impacted by unstable housing.
- I’ve also seen how the stress affects the children academically and emotionally. They want to help their parents but don’t know how.