14 residents from Oklahoma provided shelter before the holiday season

A total of 14 individuals in Oklahoma City now have a place to call home, thanks to the efforts of over 40 organizations working together to prevent and end homelessness.

Fourteen individuals living in two outdoor encampments received an early visit from Santa Claus. Thanks to the newly established Key to Home Partnership, they were provided with housing and were assigned a personal case manager on Thursday.

Eight individuals were residing at the intersection of I-40 and Martin Luther King Boulevard, according to officials from Key to Home Partnership. An additional six individuals, one of whom was a minor, were living in close proximity to SW 15th Street and Portland Avenue.

The Partnership’s Encampment Rehousing Initiative has successfully provided homes to 40 individuals who were previously living outdoors since September.

The Key to Home Partnership aims to provide housing for 500 individuals who are currently experiencing homelessness without shelter by the year 2025.


According to Jamie Caves, Key to Home Partnership Communications Manager, residents have the opportunity to contribute to their efforts by donating at keytohomeokc.org. Caves explains that private donations are crucial in eliminating obstacles and maximizing public funding. Some move-in expenses, like furniture and administrative fees, cannot be covered by public funding, so the organization relies on the support of the community. Caves emphasizes that housing is the ultimate solution to address this crisis.

The winter months bring about a dangerous situation for the approximately 1,400 individuals who call the streets of Oklahoma City their home. The homelessness rate in Oklahoma City is influenced by various complex factors, including low wages, a shortage of affordable housing, increasing eviction rates, and inflation.


    • Staff from Key to Home Partnership, Mental Health Association and Hope Community Services provided outreach and engagement services to those living in the encampment.
    • City Rescue Mission and OCHA secured the apartments.
    • Focus on Home furnished apartments with necessities.
    • OCHA assisted with rental subsidies.
    • Case managers are provided by the Homeless Alliance, City Care, Catholic Charities and NorthCare, who will help people stabilize and recover over the next year.
    • Clean up of encampments is provided by Oklahoma County’s SHINE program.
    • ODOT helped maintain the areas after people moved out.

“Rehousing those in this encampment and beginning the maintenance of the area has been a community-wide effort,” Caves added. “Many agencies have come together to improve the health and safety of a vulnerable population while also improving the landscape of our community. Now that the encampment is closed, outreach teams continue to engage people in the area. We are planning potential ways to beautify areas but that will require additional funding and partnership with art agencies in Oklahoma City.”

Key to Home Partnership

In April 2023, Oklahoma City introduced a fresh approach to tackle homelessness with the launch of the Key to Home Partnership. This innovative system of governance brings together more than 40 agencies, including the City of OKC and various private sector organizations. The mission of the Key to Home Partnership is to work collaboratively and effectively to prevent and ultimately put an end to homelessness in Oklahoma City.

The Key to Home Partnership’s action plan prioritizes the reduction of unsheltered homelessness through housing. The organization has set four goals to be accomplished between 2023 and 2025:

    1. Create a new governance system.
    2. Address homelessness differently by improving infrastructure and capacity.
    3. Achieve a 25% reduction in Youth Homelessness by rehousing or diverting 100 youth by 2025.
    4. Achieve a 75% reduction in chronic Unsheltered Homelessness by rehousing 500 people experiencing unsheltered homelessness by 2025.

About homelessness in OKC

On a typical night, around 1,400 individuals in Oklahoma City find themselves facing homelessness. Out of this population, approximately 500 individuals are forced to sleep outdoors. The homelessness rate in Oklahoma City is influenced by a multitude of intricate factors, including low wages, a shortage of affordable housing, increasing eviction rates, and the impact of inflation.

If you’re interested in getting involved or want to learn more about the Key to Home Partnership, you can visit keytohomeokc.org .

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