RFP Awards FAQ

1.       How are racial equity targets being met through the RFP awards?

Data shows that by percentages, American Indian and Alaskan Natives have the highest disparity of exiting homeless assistance projects to permanent housing (23 %). Additionally, by percentages Blacks and African Americans, have the highest disparity of experiencing homelessness. Based on this information, the racial equity goals for this RFP are to:

• Increase the rate at which American Indian/Alaskan Native households exit to permanent housing to a rate that is comparable to other races.

• Increase the rate at which Black/African American households maintain permanent housing through a homelessness prevention project, or are diverted from homelessness.

RFP award decisions are keenly focused on moving people into permanent housing to end their state of homelessness and address African American and Native American/Alaskan Native population who disproportionately experience homelessness. Organizations that demonstrated the ability to execute programs that aid in the prevention of homelessness and the number of individuals and families that exit to permanent housing for the American Indian/Alaska Native, Black/African American community have been awarded funding to meet RFP racial equity targets.  

2. How many total proposals were there?

HSD received a total of 181 proposals from 57 agencies for the 2018 Homeless Investments request for Proposals (RFP). 

3. What was the total dollar amount for submitted proposals?

A total of $105,708,860 dollars was requested from the 181 proposals submitted.

4. How many organizations are receiving first time funding? What is the total dollar amount for all of them? Can you provide specifics on each organization and why they recieved funding?

Four organizations are receiving first time funding, totaling $4,275,556.

o   Seattle Indian Health Board: The Seattle Indian Health Board (SIHB), Chief Seattle (CSC), and Mother Nation are forming a 3-agency partnership to address and prevent homelessness for Native people. SIHB was selected as the lead applicant agency for the HSD grant applications due to their organizational capacity and experience administering government grants including federal, state, county and city. SIHB is well-positioned to implement and manage the AI/AN homelessness continuum with 165 FTE and an annual agency budget of $17 million. Seattle Indian Health Board features an epidemiology research center on its campus-providing access to data relating to American Indian and Alaska Native communities. SIHB health providers have a unique advantage to better coordinate and direct care for patients, by accessing regular updates on epidemiological trends. SIHB has been awarded funding to provide homeless prevention, diversion, outreach, emergency services, and rapid re-housing services.

o   Somali Youth and Family Club: Somali Youth and Family Club serves families and individuals experiencing homelessness through a customized support service model to make homelessness rare and brief. SYFC serves many refugee families and individuals who have experienced trauma--- growing up in war torn countries, losing family members through violence, starvation, malnutrition, dehydration---in addition to homelessness. Nearly all families and individuals served further experience the re-traumatization of experiencing poverty in the U.S. due to barriers including: language, not knowing their place in their new home society, transportation, lack of skills to be self-sufficient. These combined can lead to the inevitable--- becoming homeless after 3 months of one's arrival to the U.S. SYFC uses evidenced based practices to provide culturally relevant and individualized services. They have been awarded funding t9o provide homeless prevention and rapid re-housing services.

o   United Indians of All Tribes: First-hand knowledge of racial disparities as it relates to American Indian and Alaska Native people, equips United Indians of All Tribes to address inequities in homelessness, unemployment, and school dropout rates by providing high-quality, effective, culturally appropriate services to underserved communities.  United Indians of All Tribes engage program constituents and the broader community in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of all programs, and relies on data-driven, evidence-based models for all programs that undergo continuous quality improvement processes. United Indians of All Tribes strengths include well-researched and well-informed commitment to services for the urban Indian community, which has experienced extreme inequity in service access, provision, and quality. They also maintain partnerships with several social service agencies that serve a broad spectrum of underserved people. They have been awarded funding to provide homeless prevention and transitional housing services.

o   New Horizons: New Horizons uses a person-centered approach to provide services that are tailored to each participant's needs and goals. The person-centered design allows for the flexibility of services that are tailored to meet individual needs, and responsive to cultural differences. New Horizons uses progressive engagement to help young adults move from low-barrier shelters and drop in services to employment and permanent housing. New Horizons partners with organizations throughout the homeless youth continuum of care to ensure that participants have access to all services they need to reach their potential. New Horizons is a hub for food, clothing, job training, housing, medical care, mental health services, enrichment activities, and recreation. They have been awarded funding to provide diversion, outreach and emergency services.

5. How much is being funded in each program area? The following dollar amounts will be allocated to fund the intervention areas listed below:

a. Homelessness Prevention: $2,492,577.

b. Diversion: $1,993,300.

c. Outreach and Engagement: $2,988,157.

d. Emergency Services: $16,113,536.

e. Transitional Housing: $1,859,914.

f.  Rapid Re-Housing: $4,317,758.

g. Permanent Supportive Housing: $4,020,965.

6. What is the appeals process?

The Post-Notice of Award Appeal Process (as outlined in RFP Appendix G) is available to applicants upon award notification. Only the following will be considered as a basis for appeal:  

• A matter of bias, discrimination, or conflict of interest.

• Violation of policies or failure to adhere to guidelines or published criteria and/or procedures established in a funding opportunity.  

Any applicant wishing to appeal a decision regarding award must submit the appeal in writing to the HSD Director within five (5) business days from the date of the written notification by HSD. All appeals must include the following information:

o Agency name, mailing address, phone number and name of individual responsible for submission of the appeal;

o   Specify the funding opportunity title;

o   State the specific action or decision you are appealing;

o   Indicate the basis for the appeal including specific facts;

o   Indicate what relief or corrective action you believe HSD should make;

o   Demonstrate that you made every reasonable effort within the funding process schedule to resolve the issue, including asking questions, attending information sessions, seeking clarification and otherwise alerting HSD to any perceived problems; and

o   Signed by the Agency's Executive Director or similar level agency management staff.  

The applicant will receive a receipt from the HSD Director's Office notifying the applicant of the date, time, and method by which the appeal was received. If the applicant does not receive a receipt within two business days, it should be assumed that HSD did not receive the appeal and it will therefore not be considered.

The HSD Director will review the written appeal and may request additional oral or written information from the appellant organization. A written decision by the HSD Director will be made within five (5) business days of the receipt of the appeal. The HSD Director's decision is final.

Appeals must be addressed to:

Catherine Lester, Director

Seattle Human Services Department

700 5th Avenue, Suite 5800

P.O. Box 34215

Seattle, WA 98124-4125

Email: Catherine.Lester@seattle.gov    

7. How were award allocations determined? This RFP used seven project-specific rating committees comprised of nearly 40 people to review applications. Recommendations are based on narrative and performance data application scores, feedback from applicant interviews, population and geographic considerations, number of households intended to be moved into permanent housing and racial equity goals. Rating committees were asked to forward more projects for funding than actual funds are available, using a maximum funding amount in each project area. Through this process, each rating committee created a list of projects recommended for full, partial, or no funding.  Rating committees then used a tiered system to determine projects for priority funding and projects which could be funded based on available funds.

8. When does funding begin?

The contract period will begin on January 1, 2018.

9. What are the next steps for organizations now that awards are announced?

Agencies will connect with their assigned HSD Grants and Contracts Specialist staff member to begin the execution of their services contract.

10. How many shelter beds will be in the city as a result of the RFP?

There will be a total of 1,464 shelter beds. 1,244 are enhanced shelter beds that provide services and 220 beds provide basic overnight shelter. 854 beds in 2018 provide 24-hour shelter. This includes beds at the Navigation Center and Compass at First Presbyterian, which were funded outside of the RFP. This is an increase of 561 beds providing 24-hour shelter from 2017.  In 2017, HSD funded 1,713 shelter beds. 964 beds provided only basic shelter and 749 provided enhanced support.

11. Will the shelter beds be in enhanced shelter models?  If so, how many new "enhanced model" shelters?

The City anticipates the number of shelter beds in the 24/7 and/or enhanced shelter models will increase from 293 to 854. Of the 1204 total beds, 516 will be provided in 24/7 enhanced model shelters.

12. How many programs did not meet the performance measures at all when we looked to evaluate them (using Jan-June 2017 data)?

Two programs did not meet performance standards.  Those projects were evaluated by the rating panels but did not receive any points for their performance score.

13. Are there any outstanding examples of joint applications or agencies collaborating?

Seattle Indian Health Board, Chief Seattle Club and Mother Nation developed collaborative proposals in many project areas.  Their applications demonstrated a beneficial partnership for each of the agencies and developed a continuum of services to best meet the needs of Native persons experiencing homelessness. This addresses one of the primary goals of the RFP:  to address racial disparities in American Indian/ Alaska Native populations.

14. What areas are receiving the largest allocation of funding?

Emergency Services and Rapid Re-Housing are receiving the largest allocation of funding. Emergency Services will receive $16.1 million and Rapid Re-Housing will receive $4.3 million.  

15. What areas are receiving the greatest increase from last year's allocation?

Diversion services and Rapid Re-Housing are receiving the greatest increase from the 2017 investment. Funding for Diversion services has increased from $31,492 to $1,993,300. Funding for Rapid Re-Housing has increased from $1,127,030 to $4,317,758. 


16. As the City tries to improve the response system performance, are there still gaps that exist that are not funded through these awards?

Movement into permanent housing is a main priority for this RFP to end homelessness. The largest gap in our system will be permanent affordable housing. Some forms of permanent housing will be funded through this RFP, however other forms will not. More affordable housing overall is necessary to more effectively address homelessness in Seattle.

17.  How many families are we going to serve in 2018?

Today, Seattle has 8,476 people experiencing homelessness (3,857 unsheltered). In the accepted proposals, providers outlined their strategies to move more than 7,000 people experiencing homelessness into permanent housing in 2018 compared to 3,026 (projected) in 2017. This includes 739 families and 1,094 youth and young adults.   

18. What is outreach going to look like in 2018?  Will it be very different from 2017?

Outreach will be spread among more agencies with connections to populations experiencing the greatest disparities.  HSD will work with agencies to ensure collaboration between outreach efforts and consistency in standards of practice.