Homelessness Prevention & Diversion Fund (HPDF)

HPDF Is a Gamechanger

Pairing youth and young adult-centered housing diversion support with immediate, flexible funding has made housing solutions an enduring reality for hundreds of Washington young people facing homelessness, all for a low cost per household.

In August 2020, A Way Home Washington launched the HPDF (formerly the Centralized Diversion Fund) in four Anchor Communities — Walla Walla, Yakima, Spokane and Pierce counties — and has expanded to six in the second cohort. The HPDF is housing more young people than any other housing program in each county it is operational in.

HPDF has been used to:

  • Provide rental assistance after an accident that resulted in injury. The client had returned to work but was behind on bills and facing eviction.
  • Cover the costs of food and expenses during the transition period while a client was relocating to live with their mother to also provide care for her.
  • Ensure a young person who was relocating to begin community college had rental assistance. The client was employed and had secured an apartment with a friend.
  • Assist a young parent to move out of a toxic environment with their two children to safe and stable housing with rental and deposit assistance.
  • Pay off a previous utility bill to allow the tenant to create a new account in their new apartment.

Meeting the Needs of Young People

“The diversion fund is uniquely flexible in what it can pay for and who can access it. A number of different community members and organizations can pull money out of it — not only youth homeless service providers but schools, tenant advocates, youth advisory board members and tribal centers. The idea is that young people can approach whoever they are comfortable with or already have a relationship with for help.”

The Seattle Times, Oct. 28, 2022

An efficient and targeted solution that works — 93% of youth are still housed one year after an average $1,900 intervention.

The Homelessness Prevention & Diversion Fund offers fast, flexible, and low-barrier access to resources to successfully house youth and young adults long-term with a 93% retention rate 12 months after accessing the Fund.

“What prevents youth homelessness is often very simple — asking what a young person needs to stay housed and then making sure they get it. For far too long in our field, we’ve told young people what they need rather than listening to what they say. At A Way Home Washington, we are proud to center the expertise and voices of young people experiencing homelessness or housing instability, forming our programs and flexible spending around their lived experiences.”

Julie Patiño, Executive Director of A Way Home Washington