Abt Associates: Bold thinkers driving real-world impact
Utter the word "training" and the first image that typically comes to mind is information-laden slides that overwhelm the audience by the presentation’s end. However, Abt Associates staff, in coordination with the Technical Assistance Collaborative (TAC) and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), is breaking away from the traditional PowerPoint presentation, opting for more accessible and interactive resources that can be used by the 319 grantees implementing the Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program. SSVF is part of the VA’s initiative to prevent and end homelessness among our nation’s Veterans.
One of these resources is SSVF University—an inclusive online compilation of homelessness research, toolkits, and training resources. Although the resources have been developed for the SSVF program, many of these materials can be adapted or adopted for a variety of rapid re-housing and homelessness prevention programs. In fact, all homeless service providers, whether receiving SSVF funds or not, can visit the site for guidance on a broad range of topics, including Housing First and Crisis Response, Landlord Supports, and Targeting, Outreach, and Engagement.
Complementing these year-round resources, are a series of in-person Regional Meetings held for grantees nationwide. These meetings are rooted in an experiential, group-learning-based model, giving participants the opportunity to work hands-on with fellow grantees on case scenarios they are likely to encounter in the field. The Regional Meetings, too, are an important model for homelessness programs beyond SSVF, offering a vital knowledge transfer mechanism across regions by encouraging peer-sharing and eliciting deeper conversation.
As other resources and strategies become available to practitioners in the field, we will be sure to share them with you. For more information on Abt technical assistance for your local homeless services system, please contact Brooke Spellman.
Abt Associates is a mission-driven, global leader in research, evaluation and program implementation in the fields of health, social and environmental policy, and international development. Known for its rigorous approach to solving complex challenges, Abt Associates is regularly ranked as one of the top 20 global research firms and one of the top 40 international development innovators. The company has multiple offices in the U.S. and program offices in more than 40 countries.