Are you struggling with service delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic? Housing First University is here to help. We’ve organized a series of webinars that address everything from organizational response and continuing opioid treatment, to Housing First services, retaining landlord relationships, and community inclusion during a global pandemic.

Join us for one, several, or all of our upcoming webinars to learn from people who do this work every day. Our presenters are all experts in their field and will share their experiences in service delivery throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to help you to improve your own services as we all navigate this new normal together.

Adapting & Responding to COVID-19: Lessons Learned​ Watch the recording on-demand for free!

Presenters: Christine Simiriglia, CEO & Xavior Robinson, COO
Wednesday, June 10, 2020 12:00- 1:00 pm est


Like all other social service agencies, Pathways to Housing PA has been presented with a number challenges and opportunities during this time of physical distancing, signaling the need for innovation in our communication and service delivery. In this session, Pathways’ President and CEO, Christine Simiriglia, and Chief Operating Officer, Xavior Robinson, will discuss the organization’s response to COVID-19 and lessons learned in the midst of a developing pandemic. Attendees will hear about the ways in which Pathways’ has harnessed new technology to provide continued support to our program participants, as well as strategies for supporting our staff in staying safe and healthy. Ample time will be allotted for Q&A.

This webinar is best suited for C-suite executives, program directors, and managers implementing agency protocol and adapting to emerging issues in organizations serving individuals managing psychiatric disabilities and substance use disorders, as well as those experiencing homelessness.​

Christine Simiriglia, MA (President & Chief Executive Officer), established Pathways to Housing PA in Philadelphia in 2008 and launched the Philadelphia Furniture Bank in 2014, providing furnishings to individuals and families moving out of homelessness. In 2016, Pathways became the first Housing First program to use a scattered site/harm reduction model to work with people who are street homeless with a substance use disorder, primarily opioids. That same year, Pathways established a medication-assisted treatment program, in house, to fill a treatment gap made larger by the opioid epidemic. In 2017, Pathways developed a Housing First Training Program for agencies and communities looking to use the model. Pathways believes that the best trainers are practitioners and that they can answer questions that no one else can. That training has grown into Housing First University. Chris has spent the last decade traveling throughout the US speaking at conferences and symposiums and providing technical assistance to organizations and communities struggling to establish Housing First programs. She believes that great outcomes are achievable for everyone if providers offer choice, kindness and opportunity to the people they serve.

Xavior Robinson, MHA (Chief Operating Officer), joined Pathways to Housing PA as COO in September of 2019. In this capacity, he provides operational oversight and strategic support for our programs and service lines. Prior to joining Pathways, Xavior worked as a Senior Consultant at Health Management Associates (HMA). In this capacity he advised managed care organizations, federal and state public health agencies, life sciences corporations, and providers on opportunities to optimize services integration and sustainability for populations affected by mental health conditions, substance use disorders, HIV, and Hepatitis C. Prior to HMA, Xavior provided training and technical assistance to stakeholders at the nexus of public and behavioral health, community engagement, and financing at the National Council for Behavioral Health and the National Alliance State and Territorial AIDS Directors. Xavior holds a Master of Health Services Administration from The George Washington University.

Watch the recording on-demand for free!

Keyed In: Retaining Landlord Relationships When Things Get Rough 

Presenters: John Lambert, MA & Matt Tice, MSW LCSW
Thursday, June 18, 2020 1:00- 2:30 pm est


This session will provide knowledge of proven leasing practices, techniques used to retain units, and discussion of how to build and cultivate productive, sustainable landlord relationships. Presenters will provide a general introduction to the Housing First approach to leasing, incorporating essential harm reduction principles. Attendees will also learn how clinical and housing teams work both distinctly and collaboratively to help participants find placement in appropriate units. A vital skill for supportive housing work is responding to the needs of our landlords, while also maintaining supportive clinical relationships with our participants. As such, presenters will discuss best practices for addressing behaviors that challenge tenancy and provide suggestions for resolving issues related to lease violations. Ample time will be allotted for Q&A.

This webinar is best suited for housing professionals, direct service providers, and clinical staff of supportive housing programs— including case managers, peer specialists, tenant services coordinators, mobile psych rehab workers, and/or supervisors of such workers. This webinar may also benefit program managers, directors, or other human services workers conducting home visits, as well as those interested in Housing First and harm reduction models.​

John Lambert, MA, is an avid advocate for the Housing First model, and has served as the Director of Housing for Pathways since 2008. John received his B.A. in Sociology from Ramapo State College; and his M.A. degree from Rutgers University. He came to Pathways to Housing PA with a diverse employment background which includes working as a teacher and a certified Substance Abuse Counselor. In 2000, John moved to the South Jersey/Delaware Valley area and joined the staff of the Mental Health Association of Southeastern PA (MHASP). He received training and certification as a Targeted Case Manager, and later became the Program Manager for a low income housing project for people with mental health issues. After spending several years learning the "ins and outs" of housing alternatives for people dealing with behavioral health/substance abuse issues, he brought his wealth of knowledge to Pathways to Housing PA, where he faithfully serves the chronically homeless population in Philadelphia.​

Since 2012, Matt Tice, MSW LCSW, has held the role of Assistant Team Leader, Team Leader, and Clinical Director at Pathways to Housing PA, and now serves as the agency’s first Behavioral Health Therapist, working in conjunction with the Integrated Care team. Spending face-to-face time with participants and staff at multiple levels every day informs his constantly evolving practice. Matt is a passionate champion for the models of Housing First, harm reduction, and holistic integrated care. His ultimate goal is to join together with the amazing partners, advocates, fighters, and survivors across the city for the eradication of homelessness in Philadelphia. Matt provides webinars for both national and local providers as well as smaller community groups, faith-based groups, and social service agencies.

Continuing Office Based Opioid Treatment in the Age of COVID-19: On the Ground Advice 

Presenters: Dr. Lara Carson Weinstein, MD, MPH, DrPH & Robin DeBates, MS, MSW, LCSW


In this session, presenters will provide an overview of the Integrated Care Clinic at Pathways to Housing PA and adaptations made to support individuals managing opioid use disorder during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a satellite site of Project HOME Healthcare Services, the clinic provides primary care and behavioral health supports to individuals with psychiatric disabilities and substance use problems who are experiencing chronic homelessness. Attendees will learn about the epidemiology of COVID-19 and its impact on this population, potential barriers to participant engagement with MAT supports, and the equitable adaptation of telehealth in providing accessible care. Ample time will be allotted for Q&A.

This webinar is best suited for medical and behavioral health professionals serving individuals managing opioid use disorder—including physicians, nurses, therapists, substance use specialists, and/or supervisors of such workers. This webinar may also benefit healthcare clinic staff, case managers, outreach workers, or other medical professionals interested in harm reduction and cross-disciplinary collaboration.​

Dr. Lara Carson Weinstein, MD, MPH, DrPH​, is a family physician, addiction medicine specialist, and public health researcher working to realize health equity in partnership with people experiencing psychiatric disabilities, substance use disorders, and complex chronic disease. As an Associate Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine, Sidney Kimmel Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Lara provides clinical care through the Project HOME Health Services (PHHS) Federally Qualified Health Center at the Pathways to Housing PA satellite, where she is the Director of Integrated Care and Research. Lara’s team leads research efforts for a Primary and Behavioral Healthcare Integration grant and a Medically Assisted Treatment Primary Care Expansion Grant both funded by SAMHSA, as well as an innovative community-based Opiate Use Disorder Center of Excellence funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, and a newly awarded grant from the Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts. Lara’s work is done in collaboration with two nationally recognized community organizations in Philadelphia, Pathways to Housing PA and Project HOME, that provide permanent supportive housing for people with experiences of homelessness, serious mental illness, and substance use disorders.  

Robin DeBates, MS, MSW, LCSW, currently serves as the OBOT Program Manager for Project HOME Health Services in Philadelphia. Grounded in social justice and critical theory practice, Robin embraces harm reduction from both public health and psychotherapeutic perspectives. Robin has regularly presented to Thomas Jefferson University's Sidney Kimmel Medical College on trauma informed engagement skills for medical professionals working with people who use drugs and people experiencing homelessness. She has presented at state and national conferences on building patient centered, low barrier, harm reduction oriented MAT programs in primary care settings, and on values-based frameworks for resolving ethical dilemmas in harm reduction and Housing First settings. Robin brings a breadth and depth of compassionate direct practice experience in emergency and social safety net services including ER social work, domestic violence shelters, community mental health, substance abuse programs, and federally qualified health center settings in Seattle and Philadelphia.​

Click here to register now!

Providing Integrated Housing First Services in the Era of COVID-19 

Presenters: Alicia Bond, MSW & Kate Gleason-Bachman, RN BSN​
Thursday, July 2, 2020 2:00- 3:30 pm est 


In this webinar, presenters will provide an overview of Pathways’ clinical and integrated care services and adjustments made to service delivery during this time of social distancing. Attendees will learn about our medical tier system, how it informs frequency of contact with our high-needs participant population, and the role of telehealth in ensuring that our participants’ medical and behavioral health needs are met. Presenters will also offer concrete strategies for supporting staff in adapting to new communication protocols to ensure high-quality service provision while also promoting self-care in a rapidly changing environment. Ample time will be allotted for Q&A.

This webinar is best suited for direct service and clinical staff of supportive housing programs, or any social service provider responsible for conducting home visits — including case managers, peer specialists, nurses, and/or supervisors of such workers. This webinar may also benefit program managers, directors, or C-suite professionals, other human services workers or providers of telehealth services, as well as those interested in harm reduction and cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Alicia Bond, MSW, joined Pathways to Housing PA in 2019 and currently leads a non-fidelity ACT team for individuals whose primary diagnosis is Opioid Use Disorder. She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree from Pennsylvania State University in 2006, majoring in Sociology and Criminal Justice, and received her Masters of Social Work from West Chester University in 2018. Alicia has served in various social work roles through her career, including adult case manager for a mobile psych rehab, lead clinical specialist for an Assertive Community Treatment team, and child welfare case manager partnering with the Department of Human Services. Alicia is a passionate social justice advocate, and is eager to make a difference in the lives of individuals impacted by homelessness, mental health challenges, and substance use.​

Kate Gleason-Bachman, RN BSN, is a Philadelphia-based nurse that has worked in community health for the past twelve years.  Her nursing career has been focused on serving people experiencing homelessness and her current interest areas include substance use disorders, medication assisted treatment, food access and nutrition, and wound care. Kate currently serves as the Director of Nursing at Pathways to Housing PA, and has extensive experience specifically serving individuals with opioid use disorder.  She supports patients in the home and community with acute, chronic, and preventive health care needs and helps people experiencing opioid use disorder re-integrate into health care settings. Kate has a BA in Sociology from Bryn Mawr College and a Bachelor’s of Nursing from Columbia University.  She is currently pursuing a Master’s of Public Health at Temple University and will receive her degree in 2020.

Community Inclusion During a Global Pandemic: Staying Apart, Together 

Presenter: Rob Wetherington, MA
Tuesday, July 7, 2020 2:00- 3:30 pm est

Individuals who have experienced homelessness and those managing multiple disabilities have endured loneliness and isolation long before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. We also know that these same folks have fewer resources to respond proactively to the virus. In this session, attendees will learn about how Pathways to Housing PA has worked to best prepare our participants for this period of physical distancing and the creative solutions we’ve employed to keep individuals regularly engaged with their supports. Through exploring the 12 domains of community inclusion, attendees will develop skills to create opportunities for clients to use their voices and self-determination to experience social connection while simultaneously staying safe at home.

​This webinar is best suited for those working directly with individuals who have previously or are currently experiencing homelessness, as well as other individuals living with disabilities that may contribute to social isolation— including case managers, behavioral health professionals, peer specialists, outreach workers, and/or supervisors of such workers.

​Rob Wetherington, MA, joined Pathways to Housing PA in 2012 to develop art programming to foster connections between staff and participants. Having spent more than fifteen years in homeless services both as an employee and volunteer, Rob’s emphasis has been to help people re-imagine their lives through the arts, peer support, and clinical services. Rob has helped to build the Community Inclusion and Advocacy Department at Pathways, which acts as a conduit to community resources and strives to support participants living in the community like everyone else. Partnering with the clinical teams, the department assesses activities participants want to explore and bridges participants to the community. Rob earned a BFA in Art Education from Old Dominion University and an MA in Urban Studies at Eastern University.

“I thoroughly enjoyed the first webinar – it was really helpful to hear from folk who are on the ground working with people.  I’m really looking forward to the rest of the series and to sharing the content with my colleagues.” – “Recovering from Homelessness” Webinar Attendee