"Having up-to-date, reliable data on a community’s homeless population is critical to ending homelessness."
This Q&A with Aras Jizan was originally published in Community Solutions' 2017 Annual Report.
Aras works on the Built for Zero Data Team where he designs, customizes, and implements data tools and analytic frameworks that help communities end chronic and veteran homelessness.
What is data analytics?
At a basic level, it’s collecting and looking at information systematically in order to make better decisions.
Homelessness is a constantly shifting problem. In order to effectively solve for it, communities need accurate and up-to-date data on the issue.
That's why Built for Zero communities create real-time, person-specific data sets of the people experiencing homelessness in their region. This information is graphed in custom dashboards, powered by Tableau, a data visualization software. These dashboards make it easier for local teams to analyze their data and use it to inform their decision-making.
In 2008, Rana Awdish was a healthy physician about to complete her fellowship in critical care, and she was pregnant with her first child. Then, everything changed: an undetected tumor in her liver burst, causing her organs to fail, and suddenly she was fighting for her life in the very hospital where she worked.
This experience as a patient had a profound impact on Awdish, as she realized the unintentional harm that can be caused by interactions with healthcare providers.
Patrisse Cullors, activist, author, and the Co-Founder of Black Lives Matter, delivered a powerful keynote address at the Built for Zero Conference and Learning Session in Detroit earlier this summer.
Cullors’ talk corresponded to one of the tracks of the conference: taking action on structural racism.
The Changing the Conversation podcast has created a series of episodes featuring the keynote speakers at the Built for Zero Conference and Learning Session in Detroit.
This week nearly 600 people gathered in Detroit for the Built for Zero Conference and Learning Session, all on a journey to end homelessness in communities around the country.
The event brought together communities in the Built for Zero collaborative and 20,000 Homes Campaign, a partner campaign coordinated by the Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness to help 20 Canadian communities end chronic homelessness by 2020.
This article is excerpted from Getting to Proof Points: Key Learning from the First Three Years of Built for Zero. Click here to read the full report.
No community can end homelessness of any kind without comprehensive, real-time, person-specific data on the problem.
Thursday in Washington, DC, we released Getting to Proof Points: Key Learning from the First Three Years of Built for Zero.
Of course, we’re kidding (or are we…?), but it is true that a real-time, comprehensive, by-name list of everyone experiencing homelessness in a community is the essential first step to getting everyone housed.