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Reducing Homelessness for Families, Children, and Youth with Disabilities Using the SOAR Model

Kristin Lupfer, Project Director of the SAMHSA SOAR TA Center, facilitated a workshop at the National Federation of Families' 2021 Virtual Conference titled, "Reducing Homelessness for Families, Children, and Youth with Disabilities Using the SOAR Model."


This presentation by Kristin Lupfer is a solution-based, facilitated discussion that focuses on collaborative ways that the SOAR model can be used to increase income and housing stability for children and youth who have disabling conditions.

Session Outline:

  • An overview of the Social Security Administration's disability determination process and information on how the SOAR model can be used to assist children, youth, and their families with SSI applications
  • Discussion of the specific challenges faced by unaccompanied youth
  • A brainstorming activity addressing challenges and opportunities to promote SOAR
  • Information on how to start a SOAR for Children Initiative
  • A review of the tools, resources, and materials available to replicate the SOAR model will be provided at the conclusion of the discussion

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define the importance of SSI benefits for children and youth with serious mental illness and their families who are experiencing or are at risk of homelessness, including income, health insurance, education and employment supports,and housing stability
  2. Explain the effectiveness of the SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) model for expediting decisions and improving approval rates for Social Security disability benefits
  3. Identify opportunities to get involved with SOAR for Children, including connecting to local SOAR efforts, the SOAR Online Course, and the SOAR Online Application Tracking (OAT) program