1 RESPITE BED PROGRAM CONCEPT PAPER A. Purpose The Department of Homeless Services (DHS) intends to issue a Request for Proposal ( RFP ) seeking a qualified vendor or vendors to develop and operate a new program called The Respite Bed Program (previously the Emergency Shelter Network Program ). DHS remains committed to developing a continuum of services specifically designed to meet the service needs of the street homeless population, and seeks to administer a continuum of resources and services designed to achieve the ultimate goal of housing placement. Based on its extensive experience with the current emergency bed network, DHS believes it needs to revise some key features to better serve the homeless. In an effort to further enhance the current continuum of resources, the Department seeks to contract with a vendor(s) who can develop significant overnight bed capacity to serve the Drop- In Centers Citywide. DHS is re-engineering the current Drop-In Center model so as to better serve clients who do not require the highest level of services typically offered to the chronically street homeless. An integral part of this re-engineering is the need to develop overnight bed capacity accessible to the Drop-In Centers. This overnight capacity through the Respite Bed program would provide temporary respite to those clients serviced at Drop-In Centers, by providing a clean, safe and comfortable place to sleep. Clients would then be transported by the vendor(s) back to the appropriate Drop-In Centers, which will continue to actively engage and provide housing placement services during business hours. DHS will be procuring day-only Drop-In Centers that act as service hubs for individuals living on the streets. A concept paper for the vision of the new Drop-In Center system is expected to be released in the same timeframe as the Respite Bed Program Concept Paper. The vendor(s) will be expected to provide the following services: 1) develop and maintain either citywide or Borough based respite bed capacity, 2) provide transportation of clients from Drop-In Centers to respite beds 3) provide linens and supplies to community partners to ensure that respite bed capacity is clean, safe, comfortable, and available for use, and 4) provide staffing to maintain relationships with the Drop-In Centers to ensure that vacancies are reported and clients are transported back and forth between the Drop-In Centers and the respite beds on a nightly basis. The vendor(s) may develop capacity through partnerships with community-based partners that may include, but would not be limited to, churches, synagogues, other community-based organizations and recreational centers. Overview The goal of the Respite Bed Program is to provide a network of overnight bed capacity to seven Drop-In Centers whose clients are receiving case management or other services at the Drop-In Centers. The day only Drop-In Centers will be responsible for engaging street homeless clients and providing a multitude of on-site services to achieve the ultimate goal of housing placement. The respite beds allow the Drop-In Centers to address an immediate service need, bringing the client indoors and off the street, while they continue to assist the client in housing placement.
2 For the purposes of this procurement, the Drop-In Centers will be the single point of access to the Respite Bed Program, (unless otherwise authorized by DHS). The staff members of the Drop-In Center will be required to provide a thorough assessment of the needs of the client and determine if a respite bed is the appropriate resource for the client. B. Program Information Client Population The client population is male and female single adults, 18 years or older, who are living on the streets of New York City and receiving services at a Drop-In Center. Vendor Responsibilities Developing and Providing Respite Beds to Drop-In Centers The main function of the vendor(s) is to develop overnight respite beds from communitybased partners and provide these beds to the clients of NYC Drop-In Centers. Proposers can propose to provide respite beds for the whole city or for a specific Borough. DHS anticipates that the vendor(s) will, depending on demand and season, provide between 350 and 450 beds a night to the Drop-In Center System in New York City. This System consists of seven Drop-In Centers: three in Manhattan and one each in the Bronx, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens. The vendor(s) will be required to provide capacity in each Borough based on the capacity needs of that Borough s Drop-In Centers. DHS will provide estimated Boroughbased capacity needs in the RFP. The vendor(s) will assure sufficient bed capacity is located in each Borough that the Drop-In Centers are serving. DHS reserves the right to inspect the facilities of the community-based partners to assure an appropriate environment. Relationship with Community-Based Partners To provide this capacity, the vendor(s) will recruit community-based partners who will supply beds on a nightly basis. Community-based partners may include, but are not limited to, churches, synagogues, other religious organizations, community-based organizations, recreation centers and any other organization willing to provide overnight lodging to street homeless adults. The vendor(s) will assure that the participating community-based partners meet the following conditions: Supply a minimum of 10 beds per night at any given location; provide bed capacity a minimum of 5 nights a week; be open from 8 PM or earlier to 7 AM or later and be located in facilities that meet all ADA/fire code/building code requirements. Relationship with Drop-in Centers The vendor(s) will connect each Drop-In Center to an array of nearby respite beds that will provide overnight lodging for street homeless individuals using the Drop-In Centers. Each Drop-In Center, with oversight from DHS, will determine which clients will need overnight lodging and will be responsible for having enough clients to fill the capacity that the vendor(s) provides. The Drop-In Center will be responsible for determining where clients will be bedded. The vendor(s) will provide a bed for any individual the Drop-In Center refers. 2
3 In the role of coordinator between Drop-In Centers and community-based partners, the vendor(s) will be the point of contact for both parties in ensuring the smooth delivery of respite beds to the Drop-In Centers. The vendor(s) will view the Drop-In Center system as its customer base and will resolve any issues that arise. Capacity Management The vendor(s) will also be responsible for capacity management. In this function the vendor(s) will assure that the supply from the community-based partners meets the demand from the Drop-In Centers. The vendor(s) will be required to check in daily with the Drop-In Centers to determine capacity needs. Any problems filling the supply of respite beds should be reported immediately to DHS, in a time frame to be determined by DHS. Providing Material Support to Community-Based Partners In addition to providing bed capacity, and coordinating the relationship between the community-based partners and the Drop-In Centers, the vendor(s) will handle, either directly or through a sub-contractor, all of the following program support functions: Transportation DHS believes that most respite bed clients will be able to travel between the Drop-In Center and the respite bed locations by public transportation with the Drop-In Centers supplying round trip MetroCards. For clients who are too disabled to travel by public transportation, the vendor(s) will be responsible for transporting those clients by van from the Drop-In Centers to the respite beds and back to the Drop-In Center the next morning. The vendor(s) will be expected to work with the Drop-In Centers to determine how many clients can access the respite beds via public transportation and how many will need van service. Linens and Laundry The vendor(s) will be responsible for providing linen and laundry services to the community-based partners as needed including pick-up and delivery. Anytime a new client uses a bed a new set of clean linens should be available. Linens include bed sheets, pillow cases, towels and blankets. The vendor(s) will need to develop a plan on how to pick-up and deliver linens in a timely manner. Supplies The vendor(s) will also be responsible for the purchase and delivery of client supplies and other supplies needed to allow the community-based partners to offer clean and comfortable lodging. As well as providing the above services the vendor(s) will be responsible for providing monthly reports to DHS on the usage of each of these services. Providing Technical and Clinical Support to Community-Based Partners In addition to providing the above mentioned support services, the vendor(s) will assist the community-based partners in strengthening their services through training and other technical support. 3
4 Trainings The vendor(s) will offer trainings, either directly or through a sub-contract, to the staff and volunteers of the community-based partners. The trainings may include the following: Motivational Enhancement Therapy, Conflict Resolution, De-escalation, Client Engagement, Staff Development, Servicing Mentally Ill Clients, general trainings on how to work with the homeless and information on the homeless services system in New York City. DHS will collaborate on trainings as needed. Safety and Service Support The vendor(s) should have a staff person on call 24-hours a day 7 days a week to deal with any client, supply or other emergency issues that may arise overnight, and to provide any other emergency back-up support to the community-based partners. The vendor(s) should also have a single point of contact for communication to and from DHS. C. Contractor Performance Reporting and Evaluation As outlined in this concept paper, DHS will set clear performance expectations with respect to the number of beds to be delivered on a nightly basis and the location of the beds. DHS anticipates applying financial deductions should the vendor(s) fail to deliver in these key areas. DHS will expect the vendor(s) to report daily on key indicators from the previous night including but not limited to: number of beds delivered per borough, the number of beds delivered at each location, and number of individuals for whom transportation was provided. DHS reserves the right to apply financial incentives and/or disincentives to the vendor s reimbursement based on clearly stated, measurable performance expectations. D. Anticipated Available Funding DHS estimates that the total annual amount of City funding available from the above cited RFP will be $2,600,000 per year. Preference may be given to providers that can leverage resources from other funding streams. The RFP will include the final contract amount pending available funding. E. Anticipated Procurement Timeline/Number of Awards DHS anticipates that an RFP for the program will be issued by late fall 2008, with a proposal due date shortly thereafter and an award announcement date in spring DHS anticipates that multiple contracts may be awarded from the above cited RFP. DHS anticipates that the term of the contract awarded would be for 3 years with a two 3-year renewal options, starting July 1,
5 F. Proposal Evaluation All proposals accepted under the Request for Proposal will be evaluated in accordance with the standard evaluation criteria: Demonstrated quantity and quality of successful relevant experience Demonstrated level of organizational capability Quality of program approach G. Community Feedback Process DHS is seeking written feedback from any interested parties regarding the program concept outlined above. As outlined earlier, specific points of interest include (but are not limited to): While this is written from the perspective of a citywide contract, DHS is open to considering procuring contracts that are borough-based and that propose providing Respite beds for an individual borough. DHS would be open to feedback on both approaches. General conceptual feedback on the program model. DHS welcomes input from interested parties, but requests that feedback be submitted in written form and limited to no more than two pages in length. All responses should be submitted to Suellen Schulman at by Thursday, November 6,