City staff work everyday on programs and with partners to help thos experiencing homelessness. Here are City of Austin Programs working to prevent and solve Homelessness.
Austin Homelessness Advisory Council (AHAC)
The Austin Homelessness Advisory Council (AHAC), previously named the Austin Homelessness Advisory Committee, is a group of approximately 15 individuals with lived experience with homelessness in Austin. AHAC is facilitated and administratively supported by DACC and meets on a biweekly basis to provide input on processes, programs, and practices impacting and serving individuals experiencing homelessness.
For more information or to schedule time on one of their agendas, you may reach out to Laura Williamson at Laura.Williamson2@austintexas.gov or by phone at (512) 974-1233.
Austin Public Library
Austin Public Library provides services to persons experiencing homelessness every day. At its core, the Library connects people to the resources they need and is a critical component in caring for members of our community experiencing homelessness.
Shelter and Safety
Physical and Virtual Collection
Services Specifically for Persons Experiencing Homelessness
Library Community Services Coordinators help persons experiencing homelessness navigate library resources
The Library implemented “wraparound” services, as a collaborative model, to help individuals find, understand, and connect to basic services to improve their quality of life. By centralizing services at certain locations, service providers are able to meet individuals where they are to help individuals navigate to behavior health care, medical care, employment assistance, shelter, food, clothing, and housing.
The Library welcomes partners to its locations to provide services, such as
Integral Care/HOST & PATH Outreach Teams
Central Health Medical Access Program (MAP) cards
Central Health Medical Mobile Team
Downtown Austin Community Court, Social Worker Group Counseling
In FY20, the Library’s budget will include $6,000 for mental health training for library employees
Austin Resource Center for the Homeless (ARCH)
ARCH is a city-owned housing-focused men’s shelter located in downtown Austin, managed by Front Steps. It offers emergency shelter, basic services and connections to housing for 130 men.
Austin Public Health provides free and low-cost services including:
Free HIV and sexually transmitted infections testing for those experiencing homelessness. For more information and locations call 512-972-5580.
Austin Public Health provides low-cost to free immunizations through Shots for Tots/Big Shots. The following vaccines are available:
Meningitis (through age 21),
Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR),
Varicella (Chicken Pox), and
For more information or to schedule an appointment call 512-972-5520. No one is refused services if they are unable to pay.
Homelessness Outreach Street Team (HOST)
The Homeless Outreach Street Team (HOST) is an innovative and collaborative initiative that operates in the Downtown and West Campus area, occasionally assisting other parts of the city to address the needs of people living on the streets. HOST is modeled after similar successful programs that have taken root in other cities in the U.S.
Additional Partners and Resources
The City of Austin partners with the following organizations in the community to coordinate and provide residents with access to services:
ECHO is the lead agency that plans and implements community-wide strategies to end homelessness in Austin and Travis County.
Caritas of Austin provides housing, food, educational, career, and other supportive services.
Front Steps (formerly Capital Area Homeless Alliance) offers emergency shelter, affordable housing, case management, and other supportive services.