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        The three levels of the RSCH governance structure

In the fall of 2012, the Regional Steering Committee on Homelessness turned its attention to its own internal structure and membership needs.  After months of member interviews, workshops, discussions and wider stakeholder consultation, the Committee arrived at an updated governance and membership structure to that provides new ways for homeless-serving agencies and individuals to participate.

Governance Needs

Since its beginning in 2000, the work of the RSCH and the landscape of the homeless-serving sector has evolved significantly, driving the need to update its structure and composition.  The RSCH had functioned on a flat membership structure whereby all members were required to participate equally in meetings and working groups, despite their different interests, capacities and reasons for attending.  Through the process of the Governance Review, members concluded that membership structure and participation requirements should be more inclusive, diverse, and effective.

Challenges

The Governance Review process raised important questions about coordinating the homeless-serving sector in this region.  How can the RSCH effectively engage and coordinate the expertise, intelligence and financial resources required to eliminate homelessness?  How can the RSCH strategically leverage federal homelessness dollars to implement the region’s solutions to homelessness?

Governance Solutions

To ensure inclusive, participatory and informed decisions, the RSCH has consolidated community-wide consultation to occassional meetings and technical input into more frequent advisory group meetings.  Participation at both meetings is open and flexible.

To ensure effective, strategic and timely decisions on behalf of the region, recommendations arising from community-wide consultations and advisory group meetings are reviewed and decided on by the Constituency Table.

The updated RSCH decision-making process.

Diagram: The relationship between the RSCH membership structures

General members are informed of decisions and results, upcoming issues and consulted in community-wide consultations.
Advisory Groups receive and review staff reports and member consultation summaries, and make recommendations to the Constituency Table.  The Constituency Table receives and reviews finalized documents and makes decisions.
Staff implement decisions & inform members of decisions and results.  (In the context of the HPS Call for Proposals, the RSCH recommends projects for funding, which is followed-up by the CE for final decision based on compliance of the proposal with HPS funding terms and conditions.)

Interested in learning more about the RSCH, or becoming a member?

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