History of ARCH
Although ARCH meetings have occurred as far back as the late eighties, ARCH began meeting on a regular basis in 1995 and submitted its first consolidated application to the Department of Housing and Urban Development in 1997 for Homeless Assistance. At that time, the priority areas included transitional housing and supportive services. Over time, ARCH’s priorities have slowly evolved and current priorities are centered on permanent housing, data collection and management, and quality assurance.

History of Continuum of Care
Priority Home, The Federal Plan to Break the Cycle of Homelessness, issued in March, 1994, fostered the concept of a comprehensive system of services and housing options, called a “continuum of care,” to help homeless individuals and families in local communities reach independence. This system and philosophy strives to fulfill these requirements with three fundamental components: emergency shelter, transitional housing with social services, and permanent housing.

History of Homeless Management Information System
In the late 90’s, ARCH applied for and received funding to implement a homeless management information system (HMIS) which would connect all of the homeless providers in this region so that client information and  referrals could be exchanged electronically. ARCH decided to use ServicePoint™ created by Bowman Systems and the system went live in December 2000. Since this time, HUD has mandated HMIS usage for all homeless programs except Domestic Violence programs. In Louisiana, all 10 Continuum of Cares utilize ServicePoint™ software.