Texas Homeless Network

education, resources, and advocacy

2021 Annual Report

Texas Homeless Network's 2021 Annual Report

This report reflects on the accomplishments THN made over the past year.  From securing historic funding for homeless service providers and those experiencing housing insecurity to assisting Texas programs through one of the hardest years in recent history, we are proud to share with you our 2021 Annual Report on Ending Homelessness.

Our Mission

Texas Homeless Network is committed to leading Texas communities
to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring.

Who We Are

Texas Homeless Network (THN) is a non-profit membership-based organization helping communities strategically plan to prevent and end homelessness. THN works to end homelessness in Texas by collaborating with all communities, large and small, across the state to build systems to achieve this goal. We coordinate local and national advocacy efforts, data collection and research, host an annual statewide conference, and serve as the host agency for the Texas Balance of State Continuum of Care (CoC) where we assist in the coordination of programs and funding. 

What We Do

Texas Homeless Network (THN) is a non-profit membership-based organization helping communities strategically plan to prevent and end homelessness. THN works to end homelessness in Texas by collaborating with all communities, large and small, across the state to build systems to achieve this goal. We coordinate local and national advocacy efforts, data collection and research, host an annual statewide conference, and serve as the host agency for the Texas Balance of State Continuum of Care (CoC) where we assist in the coordination of programs and funding. 

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Resources Information Graphic
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The Texas Balance of State Continuum of Care Accomplishments

1,093 technical assistance hours
1,747 Service Providers Trained

As the lead agency of the Balance of State Continuum of Care, THN accomplished incredible things in the last year. We are proud of the work that our staff and our community partners did in the Balance of State Continuum of Care staff across our Texas 215 counties.

Statewide Success: Our Initiatives in Advocacy, Data Sharing, & VISTA

Federal Advocacy Highlights

One of the largest expansions of THN’s operations since the beginning of the pandemic is our state and federal advocacy efforts. Advocacy remains a vital part of our mission to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring by seeking systems change and funding to reduce barriers for folks experiencing and exiting homelessness. 

Here at THN, we believe that housing is the cornerstone of many other intersectional issues including (but not limited to) racial justice, economic mobility, educational outcomes, political participation, disability rights, and gender equity. 

All advocacy work is done in coalition with other organizations and advocates. We could not do our work without you and our amazing partners across the state. Some highlights of our collective federal efforts for Texans include: 

  • Nearly $2B of emergency rental assistance, $246M in ESG Cares Funding, 4,517 emergency housing vouchers provided to TX Public Housing Agencies (PHAs), $343,537,510 in HOME-ARPA funding. \Fought for the CDC Eviction Moratorium which likely prevented thousands of evictions in Texas and reduced COVID-19 transmission (in effect 9/2020-7/2021 and 8/3/2021-8/26/2021).
  • Federal: Hosted meetings with 11 members of Congress representing Texas.
  • Continued to fight for the passage of the Build Back Better Act which would include historic investments in low-income housing 

State Advocacy Highlights

THN’s statewide advocacy efforts focused on COVID-19 relief and on a legislative session that included more bills related to homelessness than ever before and it marked the first time THN worked with legislators to get a bill passed into law. Items of note include: 

  • THN pushed local and state leaders to utilize local and state lawmakers to utilize CAREs and American Rescue Plan funding to prevent eviction, produce more truly affordable and supportive housing and alleviate homelessness.
  • THN fought the passage of two bills, HB 1925 and SB 646. The first, HB 1925, passes after a long fight. It criminalized living outdoors across the state and outlined policy for communities to create public “camping” areas. The second, SB 646, fortunately, died in committee. It would have allowed the countys’ commissioners courts to disallow the purchase, renovation, and use of a facility in the county the serve if they did not approve by vote.

  • THN supported two bills, one calling for a study into the effectiveness of the Texas Homeless Data Sharing Network (THDSN) that THN operates and another that dictate the Texas Interagency Council for the Homeless hold of its four meetings in a rural community in Texas. The first, the THDSN bill, passed the full House but stalled in a Senate committee. The second passed the House and came up for a vote in the Senate where its scope was changed so that the training provided to cadets focused on working with another group of citizens.

The importance of advocacy – local, state, or federal – cannot be underestimated. As with most non-profit organizations, it is incredibly difficult to secure funding to continue these efforts. We are honored to be a 2021 Opportunity Starts at Home recipient and will be able to continue these efforts next year. 

One of the primary ways we continue to do this work is through your generosity in donations and becoming a member of our Advocates Committee. We ask you to consider joining us and signing up for our advocacy newsletter to stay informed as we move forward to fight for an equitable future for people experiencing and at risk of homelessness.

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Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) Project Highlights

AmeriCorps VISTA members remain a critical part of THN’s efforts to end homelessness across the state. VISTA members participate in anti-poverty indirect service and capacity building at partner sites focused locally on their homeless crisis response system. Here are a few highlights from this past year’s VISTA members: 

  • VISTA members placed across the state – 12
  • Community volunteers recruited – 28
  • Number of new or enhanced systems and processes put into place – 38
  • Number of organizations that received capacity building services – 41
  • Number of organizations reporting higher efficiency – 10

Texas Homeless Data Sharing Network

  • This past year, staff continued to work with representatives from each of Texas’ 11 homeless response systems on the governance of the Texas Homeless Data Sharing Network (THDSN).
  • Tthe THDSN board and staff worked together to secure funding that guaranteed support for the project through December of 2021
  • Late in the year, THN staff working with Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs (TDHCA) secured funding that will allow the THDSN to continue into a second year of operation throughout 2022.
  • Presently, 9 of Texas’ 11 homeless response systems contribute data to the THDSN. These systems cover 229 out of the 254 Texas counties which is over 90% of the state. 
  • There are over 600,000 deduplicated cases collected since 2012 of people that have or are experiencing homelessness in Texas. These data have been used to secure housing for Veterans in El Paso, people experiencing chronically homelessness in Fort Worth and others seeking help across the state.
  • In 2022, THN staff and the THDSN board plan to utilize the THDSN to partner with healthcare providers and target frequent users of emergency rooms who experience homelessness for service and housing assistance. This will create better community health outcomes and save money as well.

Our Latest Blog Posts

An Examination of Veteran Homelessness in Texas

An Examination of Veteran Homelessness in Texas By: Anja Taylor Understanding the state of veteran homelessness is crucial in our mission to provide safe and stable housing for those who have served our country. Today, we examine national trends, shedding light on the challenges faced by veterans across the United States. We then focus on

Read More »

Homelessness Around the World

Homelessness Around the World By: William Kao When concentrating on addressing the issue of homelessness in our local communities, it can be easy to lose sight of the fact that other communities, both in the United States and around the world, face challenges that are both similar and different from each other. Each individual case

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The Value of Sharing Your Recovery From Homelessness

The Value of Sharing Your Recovery from Homelessness By: Tammy Chan Dear Reader,  I am a member of the Texas Balance of State Continuum of Care (TX BoS CoC) Lived Experience Committee (LEC). I’m writing this post to share part of my journey and some things that I have come to see and believe are

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A Video from Our President & CEO, Eric Samuels

This past year at THN has been one to remember.

Eric Samuels reflects on the successes, challenges, and growth that has happened at our agency during this time. Ultimately, he recaps that though late 2020 through fall 2021 was difficult on us all, it proved that our agency can and will step up to meet the challenges faced by our neighbors experiencing homelessness and the homeless response systems working hard every day to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring.

We believe that the progress we made as a state and as an agency will lead to even better results for Texas in the year ahead.

A Lettter from the THN Board

Dear Friends,

This year has presented plenty of new and enduring challenges. As the pandemic has stretched into a second year, the member organizations, staff, and partners of the Texas Homeless Network (THN) continue to step up and support their mission. The organization has once AGAIN experienced record growth while building on and improving from the lessons learned over the last year and a half. Confronted with a generational public health challenge, THN gathered strength from the communities it serves, advocating for those in need and educating those who are in a position to help. 

As you can see, the 2021 THN Annual Report highlights many of the remarkable accomplishments of THN despite and because of the challenges of the COVID-19 environment.  Among them, fund development, bringing in millions in grant awards for Texas agencies in the HUD Continuum of Care (CoC) Homeless Assistance Fund, the largest in the fourteen-year history of the Balance of State CoC. This funding will assist people to quickly regain stability in permanent housing after experiencing a housing crisis. In addition, the recently announced $2 million award from the Day 1 Families Fund puts THN in a position to aggressively intervene in hopes of achieving “functional zero” homelessness in several smaller Texas communities in the coming years. This award represents a national recognition of the incredible work that THN is doing to coordinate, educate, advocate, and otherwise support housing and service agencies across the state.  

Given the extended legislative session this year, the team has also been especially active in educating policymakers and invigorating advocates on fundamental issues such as equal housing access rights, effective and efficient ways to address unsheltered homelessness, and of course calling attention to the ongoing COVID-19 response, the impending wave of housing issues, and the recovery needs of all Texas communities. This year presented a number of policy challenges for THN and the team fought hard for the rights and welfare of Texans in response. 

Another major accomplishment was the official launch of the Texas Homeless Data Sharing Network (THDSN). The service is growing quickly and will ultimately link the Homeless Management Information System data from all 11 homeless response systems in Texas. This program will help eliminate barriers to collaboration between communities and ultimately help reduce the rate and duration of homelessness in Texas.

All this and THN is still leading the way throughout Texas in providing advocacy, training, and support in helping organizations achieve their goals as well as our own.

During my brief time as Chair, the THN board has contributed to our strategic development, organizational vision, and partner relationships. The THN board is a committed, creative, and diverse group that is extremely active and provides support and perspective to the organization. andTheir commitment and compassion is reflected in their respect for THN’s partner agencies, financial supporters, volunteers, and staff.

I join the entire board in extending our deep appreciation to the THN team for their dedication and commitment to work that has been enduringly, increasingly difficult during these unprecedented times.  We are honored and proud to see all that Texas Homeless Network has accomplished in making homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring. 

Ben King
THN Board Chair

Thank you to our THN Board Members

Dr. Ben King, Taylor Cook, Natalie Hicks, Tamara Foster, Todd Shell, Dr. Benjamin Jules, Daniel Kuehn, Nathan Pisik,
Jo Schaeffer, Paul Charles, Ben Nakhaima, and Dr. Melissa Escamilla

What's Next

THN and our partners across the state faced some of the biggest challenges in recent history this past year after an equally hard 2020. From the deadly winter storm to the ongoing pandemic,  we have seen the amount of resilience, perseverance, and drive of the people of this country and our great state. 

While we are so proud of what we’ve accomplished this year, there is still much work ahead. As an agency, we must continue to build a better future for our neighbors experiencing homelessness. We commit to strategically doing so in all aspects of our work in the following ways:

Advocacy: THN advocacy staff will remain focused on tracking and advocating for state and federal legislation that increases funding for the homeless crisis response system, reducing barriers to housing, and inclusive communities. We will continue to work with agencies and organizations around the state and country to explore ways that we can strengthen ongoing partnerships between different social service sectors.  

In 2022 THN will work with communities on campaigns to end homelessness for families. However, THN and our homeless response system partners cannot achieve this goal alone. We will advocate for the support from leaders of local, state, and federal government, corporations, faith communities, and any Texan concerned with ensuring that families are in safe, stable homes when the sun goes down each night in this state. Additionally, THN plans to work with the Texas legislature to explore concerns and potential solutions regarding homelessness subpopulations such as Veterans, families, and those suffering from Chronic homelessness through interim hearings. 

Balance of State: In the next year, we are creating new standards for projects across the state that will advance our racial justice work. THN seeks to enhance system planning for the TX BoS CoC with a focus on diversity, equity, inclusion (DEI), and justice. The activities for the upcoming year will focus primarily on addressing racial and ethnic disparities in experiences and outcomes for people in homeless situations who participate in homeless services in the TX BoS CoC.

The goals of this work will be:

  • To promote a shared responsibility for different aspects of the planning process;
  • To increase the CoC’s ability to address disparities that exist in the Coordinated Entry process;
  • To coordinate with a more diverse group of stakeholders, including people with lived experience;
  • To improve the monitoring and evaluation process and to promote more inclusive policy development.

The TX BoS CoC will also be implementing aspects of our CoC Strategic Plan over the next year. While the TX BoS CoC has made progress on ending homelessness, the current system and resources allocated to addressing homelessness are not sufficient to make the impact that the CoC wants and that people experiencing homelessness in the CoC deserve. The strategic plan is the next step in enhancing the housing crisis response system. This plan is intended to rally stakeholders around common CoC-level goals and to enable communities and service providers to identify local activities to support CoC-wide strategies. THN will work in partnership with the TX BoS CoC Board to implement and carry out the proposed activities from the CoC Strategic Plan. 

Some of the focus areas for the next year include:

  • Standardize Coordinated Entry assessment and prioritization
  • Explore regional planning and decentralized governance
  • Work to strengthen and increase local providers capacity to provide housing and services
  • Establish high “minimum standards” for emergency shelter providers
  • Establish a workgroup within the TX BoS CoC to look at disparate impact of homelessness on Black or African American individuals
  • Utilize data to help the CoC and communities identify, design solutions for, and address inequity and racial disparities
  • Promote awareness of racial disparities in homelessness across the CoC
  • Promote practices that create a highly empowered, engaged, equipped and trained workforce
  • Advance high-quality housing and service partnerships that promote resilient and equitable communities
  • Work to quickly identify and engage with all people experiencing homelessness
  • Explore host homes as options for housing youth experiencing homelessness
  • Continue to look for ways to incorporate non-HMIS data into system analysis and planning
  • Explore ways to align funding and other resources to complement the CoC’s strategic framework 
  • Provide learning opportunities for people new to homeless services
  • Equip and encourage people with lived experience to use their systems expertise to positively impact local and national conversations about housing and services


Internal agency work: THN will continue to devote time to racial justice and equity work within our agency.  The work of the Racial Equity Action Team will continue through the leadership of each THN team member as this work enters its next phase. THN hopes to issue a call for proposals to bring on an outside consultant to facilitate agency-wide activities and as we involve our partners, especially those with lived experience. We are also intentionally updating policies for the inclusive and equitable hiring of staff, contracting with external entities, and recruiting for our boards and committees.

Thank You To Our Supporters

As a membership-based nonprofit agency, our work would not be possible without our agency members, business members, and individual donations. We want to take a moment to say thank you to all those who donated between September 2020 and September 2021 (the time period of our annual report). From the bottom of our hearts, we are grateful for your continued support of our mission and work. 

Agency Members

Bell County Indigent Health Services, Bishop Enrique, San Pedro Ozanam Center Inc., New Hope Center of Paris, Downtown Dallas, Inc., MHMR of Tarrant County, MHMR of Tarrant County, ACH Child and Family Services, City of Brownsville Office of Grant Management & Community Development, Grace Place Ministries, Tarrant County Housing Assistance Office, City of Austin, Family Eldercare, Betty Hardwick Center, Caritas of Austin, Citizens for Progress, City of Laredo, City of Plano, CitySquare, Metrocare Services, Northwest Assistance Ministries, The Samaritan Inn, Castle Cares Community Ministries DBA – The Warriors Refuge, Hidalgo County Community Service Agency, Community Foundation of Abilene, Community Healthcore, Corpus Christi Hope House, El Paso Coalition for the Homeless, Endeavors, Families in Crisis, Inc., Foundation for the Homeless, Front Steps, Good Neighbor Settlement House, Guardian Angels for Soldier’s Pet, Harris County Community Services Dept., Haven for Hope of Bexar County, Helen’s Project, Hidalgo County Community Service Agency, Homelessness Help, Housing Authority of Texarkana Texas, Housing First Community Coalition HFCC, Houston Housing Authority, Institute of Cognitive Development, Inc., LifeChange Housing Associate, Loaves & Fishes of the Rio Grande Valley, Lubbock Open Door, Make A Way Wellness, Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance, Metro Relief, MHMR of Tarrant County, Mid-Coast Family Services, New Hope Housing, Inc., Nueces Center for Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Pearland ISD, Recovery Resource Council, Rural Homeless Network, Salvation Army of Dallas, San Elizario, Shelter Ministries of Dallas DBA Austin Street Center, South Alamo Regional Alliance for the Homeless, South Texas Development Council, Tarrant County Homeless Coalition, Texas Panhandle Centers, The Bridge – Homeless Recovery Center, The Chosen Ones Ministries of Galveston, The City of Waco, The Harris Center for Mental Health and IDD – PATH Program, The Salvation Army Carr P. Collins Center, The Salvation Army Victoria, Transcend STEM Education, Twin City Mission, Volunteers of America Texas, West Texas Homeless Network, WOMAN, Inc.

Individual Donors:

Carla A, Mindy A, Samantha A, Brian A, Bess A, Lorien A, Kristina A, Kelli A, Tori B, Jennifer B, Kaitlin B, Matthew B, Andrea B, Bennett B, Bonni B, Rachel B, Norma C, Sylvia C, Domingo C, Sue C, Meredith C, Patrick C, Julio C, Brittany C, Taylor C, High Court Books, Michelle C,  Sheila C, Kevin C,  Yvonne D, Marion D, JoAnn D, Paula D, Kodie D, Julie D, Melissa E, Tracy F, Samantha F, Mary F, Melissa F, Tamara F, Gabby and Patrick F, Kerry F, Martha F, Lisa F, Elliot G, Krystle G, Don G, Bradon G, Angel G, George F, Ashley H, Ann H, Eleanor H, Gabriel H, Jubal H, Sarah H, Kyra H, Judith H, Clayton H, Laura H, Natalie H, Charlie H, Shelly H, Brook H, Maureen J, Samuel H, Sula H, Shelbe H, Alesa J, Barbara J, Ben K, Lawerence K, Richard K, James K,Traci K, Denise K, Chris K, Daniel K, Rebecca L, Marti L, Brittney L, Karlene L, Briana L, Betty L, Deanne L, Julian L, Daisy L, Victoria L, Mollie L, Elena L, Marianne L, William M, Jody M, Fernanda M, Mikel M, Sara M, Alicia M, Dan M, Kari M, Shelby M, Phyllis M, Patricia M, Cass M, Ernet M, Erika M, Joy M, Carolina M, Ben N, Angelique N, Elizabeth N, Autumn N, Joseph N, Ellen N, Andrew O, Mindy O, Umesh P, Addie P, Reid P, Nathan P, Alex P, Joan P, JoQuinn, Joe R,  Mindy R, Robin R, March R, Trey R, Katherine R, Jamie R, Queshia S, Eric S, Dustin S, Omar S, Jo S, Peggy S, Adnan S, Todd S, Robert S, Rob S, Samantha S, Heather S, Lisa S, Roger Samantha D, Ashley S, Jaclyn S, Nick S, Billy S, Taylor S, Hunter S, Josh S, Crystal T, Anja T, Rebecca T, Ryan V, Khalif V, Fernanda W, Lindsey W, Meghan W, Chad W, Jeremy W, Virginia W, Preston Q, Linda X, Maxwell Y, Tracy Y, Mariposa Y, Kristin Z, Maria Z, and John Z.

How We Do Our Work

The strength of our agency comes from our supporters – our donors, members, staff, volunteers, directors, and board. With your backing, we can build more robust programs, create enhanced member incentives, and provide more education opportunities for Texans. But most importantly, your donation supports our mission to make homelessness rare, brief, and non-recurring in Texas.

In addition to your donation, our work is funded by:
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Our Financials

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