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About Homeward

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Homeward serves as Polk County’s homelessness planning organization, forging strategic partnerships between homelessness organizations, community partners, government officials, and people experiencing homelessness. Through these partnerships, we’re creating an efficient, effective homeless response system that meets all residents’ strengths and needs. Our work is to ensure that Polk County residents rarely experience homelessness at all and that their stay in homelessness is a brief, one-time experience when it does occur.

Our Mission

Our mission is to create solutions to homelessness in Polk County by collaborating with partners and maximizing resources for a healthy, housed community.

Our Vision

Our vision that one day, everyone in Polk County will have a safe place to call home. 

Our Foundational Beliefs

FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 01

Housing First

Research tells us that the most effective way to end homelessness is to quickly house people with no preconditions, requirements, or barriers. Once people are safely housed, they can then begin to pursue their goals and engage with services or treatment.

FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 02

Racial Equity

Data shows us that people of color, and Black individuals in particular, are heavily over-represented in Polk County’s homeless response system. Homeward examines racial disparity in programs to build equitable services and dismantle systemic racism. 

FOUNDATIONAL BELIEF 03

Community Collaboration

Homeward acts in close partnership with the Polk County community to ensure a coordinated approach to preventing and ending homelessness. We collaborate across sectors to engage in innovative partnerships that elevate community voices. 

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