5 Minute Requests


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5 Minute Requests


"I have studied many languages-French, Spanish and a little Italian, but no one told me that Statistics was a foreign language.” 
― Charmaine J. Forde  

Most people who have partnered with Homeward’s Director of Research and Evaluation, Margot Ackermann, know that Margot has an incredible ability to translate the conversations we have with people experiencing homelessness into data and information that tells our community how we are doing in our collective efforts to make homelessness rare, brief, and one-time. Margot oversees the Homeward Community Information System (HCIS) and the regional point-in-time counts. These two data sources together provide both cross-sectional data (snapshots of homelessness on a given day) and longitudinal data (trends over time). These data sources provide powerful and compelling information for all of us as we work together to continuously improve our coordinated response to the crisis of homelessness.  Full reports can be found here: http://www.homewardva.org/data/trends.

At Homeward, we use data which comes from the conversations with people in crisis to guide our planning and support functions for the Greater Richmond Continuum of Care. Margot and Kelly King Horne, Homeward’s Executive Director, have worked together since 2007. Along with the other staff members at Homeward, Margot and Kelly have developed a productive partnership to use data on homelessness in our community to drive decision-making. Often, Kelly will ask Margot for insight into a community issue based on available data. In order to gauge whether the question is readily available for analysis or if the request would require complicated data matching and statistical analysis, Kelly will ask Margot if her request is a “5 minute request.” These 5 minute requests typically address specific questions asked by our partners or potential partners about the experiences of subpopulations experiencing homelessness  or potential overlaps between homeless services and other systems of care.

In 2019, we want to share these insights with all of you through a new e-newsletter. We hope you find our “5 minute requests” useful and invite you to submit suggestions for future data insights to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..




Click here to access the 5 Minute Requests Archive


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Yes, we can end homelessness





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