FaSST/Connections (Family Shelter Support Team) is a behavioral health care unit that provides evaluation, linkage, and coordination of services to individuals and families living in various shelters. FaSST/Connections’ primary outcome is to engage families with a history of mental health problems and/or substance abuse. Families receive linkages to various programs such as mental health, drug and alcohol treatment, housing referrals, legal services as well as counseling and consultation with FaSST/Connections staff and other agencies including shelter staff. Advocacy, ongoing support, and empowerment are the key concepts of FaSST/Connections and the qualitative determinants of its service outcomes.
Hoops for Hope benefit
RHD FaSST/Connections is hosting a fundraiser for its Hoops for Hope project April 26 at Paddy Whack’s Sports Pub. Hoops for Hope creates a basketball league where men in Philadelphia homeless shelters can play, giving them a tool of empowerment that brings individuals together, teaches people how to work as a team, and promotes physical and mental wellbeing.
In the big leagues
RHD’s FaSST/Connections helped Abraham trade the homeless shelter for a job with the Philadelphia Phillies. MLB.com followed Abraham’s story, with a nod to the work RHD’s FaSST/Connections did to help Abraham break the cycle of homelessness and take advantage of an opportunity with the Phillies: “Employee turns life around working for Phils.” Phillies GM Matt Klentak, who played such a pivotal role in this story, said: “There was something about Abraham that was really special.”
From Shelter to Self Sufficiency through Strength-Based Case Management
FaSST/Connections’ strength-based case management, based on the key concepts of advocacy, ongoing support, and empowerment, has been hailed as a national model.