Lead Agencies

Local Community Providers of Service
The Office on Homelessness has recognized and designated local entities to serve as lead agencies for local planning efforts to create homeless assistance continuum of care systems. The Office has made these designations in consultation with the local homeless coalitions and the Florida offices of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The continuum of care model creates a framework for a comprehensive array of emergency, transitional and permanent housing, and supportive services to address the varying needs of the persons who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. These are community-based plans and are reflective of unique conditions in each local area. The purpose of the local continuum of care is to help communities envision, plan, and implement coordinated, long-term solutions to address homelessness.

A model of continuum of care should include the following components:

  1. Outreach, intake, and assessment to link housing and services to the needs of those who are homeless.
  2. Services and resources to prevent housed persons from becoming homeless or returning to homelessness.
  3. Emergency sheltering as a safe alternative to living on the streets.
  4. Transitional housing to move persons toward permanent housing solutions.
  5. Permanent housing to end episodes of homelessness.
  6. Supportive services designed to assist the person with necessary skills to secure and retain permanent housing.

The continuum of care planning effort should be an ongoing process and address all subpopulations of the homeless. Participation of all interested individuals and organizations is encouraged, including those who are or have been homeless. Faith-based organizations are encouraged to participate, along with state and regional offices that administer mainstream program resources, like Medicaid, food stamps, employment assistance, welfare assistance, and mental health services.

The development of a local continuum of care plan is a prerequisite to applying for federal housing grants through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The plan also makes the community eligible to compete for the state's Challenge Grant and Homeless Housing Assistance Grant.

To find your local lead agency and contact information view our lead agency listing document.