Southern Nevada Housing Institute
Through the sisters’ hospitals, Dignity Health is currently sponsoring a local program addressing the realm of critical issues facing the valley’s homeless population including safe, transformational housing as the first step towards improving their mental and physical health as well as destitution. The education and training program sponsored by the sisters’ hospitals and Dignity Health is being managed by the Corporation for Supportive Housing. CSH is a national non-profit organization that specializes in assisting homeless residents return to productive lives in society. Members selected to participate in the comprehensive educational program and ongoing efforts of the Southern Nevada Supportive Housing Institute began coursework in June and classes end November 17th of this year. Institute participants chosen for the program represent a broad range of organizations and agencies that work with homeless issues. RAFI Architecture and Design is one of the selected participants. With this coursework RAFI is partnered with the Hope Home Foundation, a non-profit Community Development Corporation and ULI: Nevada, an international non-profit organization focused on implementing “Best Practices” in all aspects of urban land use and development.
RAFI’s principal contribution to the Institute is it’s more than 30 years of planning, architecture and urban design experience across the Intermountain West, California and Texas and in assisting other institute partners better organize, plan, design, develop and facilitate more functional approaches to services, assistance programs and facilities each provide.
In addition, RAFI is focusing on planning and designing more economical prototypical building systems for making homeless housing more affordable and in creating new non-traditional housing alternatives where cooperative living offers increased personal security, more direct interface with others progressing in making transformational life changes and help towards reentering mainstream society.
The program’s goal through the Institute is to create a knowledgeable team of local partners working together, helping the community address and resolve homeless issues. With access to safe and supportive living arrangements, the homeless are off the streets where illness, disease, and danger reside. When provided with adequate housing and treatment, Dignity Health understands the homeless become less stressed and more mentally and medically stable.
When settled in residencies, the homeless are now more easily accessible for medical examinations, testing, treatments, dietary monitoring and counseling. Demands upon costly emergency medical services fall dramatically – as do encounters with law enforcement agencies, the courts and incarceration.