Blog | ,

Community Solutions Announces Selection of 71 Communities to Participate in Zero: 2016

November 6, 2014

Community Solutions announced today that it has selected 71 communities to participate in Zero: 2016, a national campaign to end veteran and chronic homelessness in the next two years. The organization said it would work intensively with these communities to meet the federal goals set by President Obama to end veteran homelessness by Dec. 2015 and chronic homelessness by Dec. 2016. The initiative, made possible by the support of generous sponsors including Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan Chase, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, The Home Depot Foundation, and Got Your 6, is a rigorous follow-on to the group’s successful 100,000 Homes Campaign, which announced in June that it had helped communities house 105,000 chronically homeless Americans in under four years. (A full list of Zero: 2016 communities can be found at the end of this release.)

Zero: 2016 will formally launch in January of 2015, when the majority of communities participating say they will walk their streets block by block to survey each of their homeless neighbors during the national 2015 Homeless Point-in-Time Count (PIT). Communities will use this information to develop by-name files on each person experiencing homelessness on their streets — a strategy designed to help communities connect people to available subsidies and appropriate housing options as quickly as possible.

“These communities represent a potential tipping point. If they can show that getting to zero is possible, we think it will become untenable for other communities not to follow suit. “

Beth Sandor, Director of Zero: 2016

“Chronic and Veteran homelessness are urgent, solvable problems,” said Beth Sandor, Director of Zero: 2016 for Community Solutions. “These communities represent a potential tipping point. If they can show that getting to zero is possible, we think it will become untenable for other communities not to follow suit. Zero: 2016 is about bringing shared accountability to this work. Participants are making a public commitment to get to zero on time, and they are going to use that commitment to drive measurable progress.”

This announcement comes on the heels of the release of the 2014 Homeless Point-in-Time Count, issued last week by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which showed that homelessness continues to decline across virtually all major categories. According to the report, communities selected to join Zero: 2016 account for a combined  31,669 chronically homeless Americans and 16,218 homeless veterans. Community Solutions estimates an overlap of 10,000-12,000 between these two populations.

The 71 communities selected for Zero: 2016 represent 30 different states and the District of Columbia. Among them are 55 communities who also participated in the 100,000 Homes Campaign and 16 new communities. Combined, the group represents the joint, public commitment of 234 housing authorities, local government entities, non-profit organizations and community agencies. Four states (Connecticut, New Mexico, Rhode Island and Utah) are participating as full states.

Sandor said participating communities would seek to accelerate their housing efforts through four key areas of work: closing the research-to-practice gap, real-time data and performance management, local systems redesign and local leadership development. Community Solutions will provide hands-on coaching and data tools, and will curate a national peer-to-peer learning network to accelerate innovation across communities.

Zero: 2016 will dovetail with other large-scale initiatives working to help communities end homelessness, including the 25 Cities Initiative, led by the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Mayor’s Challenge to End Homelessness, championed by First Lady Michelle Obama. Many communities selected to join Zero: 2016 are also participating in one or both of these initiatives, and Community Solutions has coordinated extensively with VA and other federal agencies to ensure that all three initiatives complement each other as well as possible.

Selected Communities:

Communities applied by Continuums of Care (CoCs), the 414 local groups set up to administer HUD funding to end homelessness in each region of the country.


Tucson/Pima County CoC


Sacramento City & County CoC

Richmond/Contra Costa County CoC

Watsonville/Santa Cruz City & County CoC

Fresno/Madera County CoC

Los Angeles City & County CoC

San Diego City and County CoC

Santa Maria/Santa Barbara County CoC

Bakersfield/Kern County CoC

Riverside City & County CoC

State of Connecticut (Includes Hartford CoC, City of Waterbury CoC, Bridgeport/Fairfield/Stratford CoC, Norwalk/Failfield County CoC, Stamford Greenwich CoC & Connecticut Balance of State CoC)

District of Columbia CoC


Tallahassee/Leon County CoC

Jacksonville/Duval/Clay/Nassau Counties CoC

Miami/Dade County CoC

Ft Lauderdale/Broward County CoC

Ft Myers/Cape Coral/Lee County CoC

West Palm Beach/Palm Beach County CoC


Columbus-Muscogee/Russell County CoC


Honolulu CoC


Rockford/Winnebago, Boone Counties CoC

Waukegan/North Chicago/Lake County CoC

Chicago CoC

Cook County CoC


Kansas City/Wyandotte County CoC

Wichita/Sedgwick County CoC


Louisville/Jefferson County CoC


Shreveport/Bossier/Northwest CoC

New Orleans/Jefferson Parish CoC


Cape Cod/Islands CoC

Springfield/Chicopee/Holyoke/Westfield/Hampden County CoC


Montgomery County CoC


Detroit CoC

Pontiac/Royal Oak/Oakland County CoC

Flint/Genesee County CoC

Ann Arbor/Washtenaw County CoC


Kansas City/Independence/Lee’s Summit/Jackson County CoC


Jackson/Rankin, Madison Counties CoC

Gulf Port/Gulf Coast Regional CoC

North Carolina:

Winston Salem/Forsyth County CoC

Greensboro/High Point CoC

Charlotte/Mecklenberg CoC


Omaha/Council Bluffs CoC

New Jersey:

Bergen County CoC

State of New Mexico (Includes Albuquerque CoC & New Mexico Balance of State CoC)


Ohio Balance of State CoC


Tulsa City & County/Broken Arrow CoC

Oklahoma City CoC

Norman/Cleveland County CoC


Lancaster City & County CoC

State of Rhode Island (Rhode Island CoC)

South Carolina:

Charleston/Low Country CoC

Columbia/Midlands CoC


Chattanooga/Southeast Tennessee CoC

Memphis/Shelby County CoC

Nashville/Davidson County CoC


San Antonio/Bexar County CoC

Dallas City & County/Irving CoC

Fort Worth/Arlington/Tarrant County CoC

State of Utah (Includes Salt Lake City & County CoC, Provo/Mountainland CoC & Utah Balance of State CoC)


Richmond/Henrico, Chesterfield, Hanover Counties CoC

Roanoke City & County/Salem CoC

Portsmouth CoC

Virginia Balance of State CoC

Arlington County CoC


Madison/Dane County CoC

West Virginia:

Huntington/Cabell, Wayne Counties CoC

Charleston/Kanawha, Putnam, Boone, Clay Counties CoC

West Virginia Balance of State CoC)

Community Solutions is a national non-profit dedicated to helping communities solve the complex social problems facing their most vulnerable residents. The organization’s work applies design thinking, quality improvement and a host of other cross-sector disciplines to issues like homelessness, unemployment, and public health. Zero: 2016 is a rigorous follow-on to the organization’s successful 100,000 Homes Campaign designed to help a select group of communities end chronic and veteran homelessness in the next two years. The initiative will formally launch in January 2015.


Zero: 2016 is made possible by the support of generous sponsors including Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan Chase, the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, The Home Depot Foundation, and Got Your 6.