NVFS to Manage Bailey’s Crossroads Community Shelter

(Oakton, Va., September 10, 2015)
   Northern Virginia Family Service (NVFS) has been selected by the Fairfax County Office to Prevent and End Homelessness to manage the Bailey’s Crossroads Community Shelter, the county-owned 50-bed emergency facility for single homeless men and women located at 3525 Moncure Avenue in Falls Church. NVFS assumed operations on September 1, 2015, from Volunteers of America (VOA), which has managed the shelter since 1994.

NVFS will operate within a Rapid Re-Housing model, assisting households to secure stable housing in the shortest time possible, with the support of shelter and community based case management and housing location. NVFS will also continue to administer other critical services provided through the shelter to include daily shelter drop in and the homeless health care program in partnership with the Fairfax County Health Department. NVFS will coordinate the Hypothermia Prevention Program in Region 2, building on the successful work of VOA, in partnership with a network of houses of worship and the Safe Haven program in partnership with The First Christian Church of Falls Church, located at 6165 Leesburg Pike Falls Church. 

NVFS will look to programs housed at NVFS’ Multicultural Center, located at 6400 Arlington Boulevard in Falls Church, to provide wraparound services for shelter clients and further strengthen resources available to the most vulnerable resident of this community. These services include: health access, employment services, mental health support, and legal assistance. In a memo dated July 13, Fairfax County Director Dean Klein stated: “In the past, it has been said, we managed homelessness. Now the focus is on preventing and ending it.” With NVFS’ commitment to rapid rehousing and track record of success at its SERVE Family Shelter in Manassas, the alignment of Bailey’s with the NVFS umbrella of programs will bring enhanced services for this population.

Northern Virginia Family Service and Volunteers of America worked collaboratively to ensure a successful transition with minimal disruption to clients and services.  A number of VOA staff have joined NVFS, further guaranteeing a seamless transition. “We are service partners in the community with Volunteers of America, and we will remain in working partnership with them after September first,” says Stephanie Berkowitz, president and CEO of NVFS, “VOA has opened the shelter to us, shared their knowledge, processes and lessons learned. It’s been a great transition from that perspective.

We are looking forward to working with the faith community and civic associations that support the Bailey’s shelter,” adds Berkowitz, “especially on the Hypothermia program spearheaded by VOA in Region Two.” 

The Bailey’s Crossroads Shelter complements housing and support services offered by NVFS in Fairfax County, including the Bridging Affordability program, case management, information and referral, employment services, legal services, mental health services and Escala, the small business development program for Hispanic entrepreneurs. In addition to its 92-bed SERVE Family Shelter, NVFS was recently awarded management of the 30-bed Hilda Barg Homeless Prevention Center in Woodbridge. Since 2009, the agency adopted a “Housing First” service philosophy, decreasing the number of nights residents spent in shelter and, ultimately, providing more stability in families’ road to self-reliance. NVFS’ best practices align with federal and state goals to prevent and end homelessness. The SERVE program has received rapid re-housing certification by the National Alliance to End Homelessness for having met national benchmarks.