Skip to Main Content

Glossary of Terms & Helpful Links

Below are terms used in the Tennessee State Plan to End Homelessness.

Click on the term to read the definition and to find a link for more information.

Peer Recovery Support Specialists are individuals who are in recovery from substance use disorders, mental health disorders, or both, and meet additional background, education, and training requirements as certified by State of Tennessee, and use their life experience and training to provide peer support to others.

A combination of state initiatives intended to increase the number of Tennesseans with a postsecondary degree or credential to 55% by 2025. The initiatives are:
Tennessee Promise: Youth experiencing transition will have access to social supports needed to apply and achieve success in the Tennessee Promise Scholarship program.
Tennessee Reconnect: Adult and youth experiencing transition will have access to the social supports needed to apply for the Tennessee Reconnect programs.
Tennessee LEAP: Post-secondary institution in collaboration with the Labor Education Alignment Program (LEAP) will receive support in eliminating skill gaps across state in a proactive, data-driven, and coordinated manner through focused interagency collaboration.

Includes all organizations receiving grants under Section 330 of the Public Health Service Act. FQHCs must serve an underserved area or population, offer a sliding fee scale, provide comprehensive services, have an ongoing quality assurance program, and have a governing board of directors.

Tennessee Health Link is a team of professionals associated with a mental health clinic or other behavioral health provider who provides whole-person, patient-centered, coordinated care for an assigned panel of members with behavioral health conditions.

An evidence-based approach to supported employment for people who have a severe mental illness. IPS supports people in their efforts to achieve steady employment in mainstream competitive jobs, either part-time or full-time.

In June of 2010, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) released a new federal strategic plan geared toward preventing and ending homelessness.
Read the federal plan here:

A count of sheltered and unsheltered homeless persons on a single night in January. HUD requires that Continuums of Care conduct an annual count of homeless persons who are sheltered in emergency shelter, transitional housing, and Safe Havens on a single night.

A point-in-time inventory of provider programs within a Continuum of Care that provide beds and units dedicated to serve persons who are homeless, categorized by five Program Types: Emergency Shelter; Transitional Housing; Rapid Re-housing; Safe Haven; and Permanent Supportive Housing.

A comprehensive, community-based resource directory for Tennesseans who are interested in recovery from mental illness, co-occurring disorders, and substance abuse. Park Center in Nashville serves as the community contact for Recovery within Reach.

A state initiative administered by the Department of Education, whose purpose is to assist children and youth experiencing transition in accessing books, materials, and tutors to assist with closing the achievement gap and increasing literacy skills.

(SAMHSA) is a branch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is charged with improving the quality and availability of prevention, treatment, and rehabilitative services in order to reduce illness, death, disability, and cost to society resulting from substance abuse and mental illnesses.

SOAR is a program designed to increase access to SSI/SSDI for eligible adults who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness and have a mental illness, medical impairment, and/or a co-occurring substance use disorder by providing assistance with benefit applications, either on initial application or appeal, and linking applications to expedited processing.

TFHC is a private, non-profit advocacy organization whose mission is to eliminate housing discrimination throughout Tennessee. The organization provides education and advocacy on housing discrimination, and also takes complaints from individuals who believe they are experiencing or have experienced discrimination.

Sponsored by the Tennessee Housing Development Agency, provides detailed information about rental properties and helps people find housing to best fit their needs. is a free, searchable registry of:  housing with accessibility features, affordable rental housing, age-restricted rental housing, market-rate rental housing. Narrow your search to include only those units that meet your specifications. See maps and pictures of properties. Vacancy information is updated regularly.

Trauma Informed Care is an organizational structure and treatment framework that involves understanding, recognizing, and responding to the effects of all types of trauma. Trauma Informed Care also emphasizes physical, psychological and emotional safety for both consumers and providers, and helps survivors rebuild a sense of control and empowerment.

USICH is an independent establishment in the federal Executive Branch that promotes and coordinates Executive Branch activities to assist homeless persons. The Council consists of 20 agencies, and the positions of chairperson and vice chairperson rotate among the agencies on an annual basis.