West Central Montana

What is the Community Housing Referral and Information System (cHris)? 

The cHris is a web-based data collection system for measuring housing insecurity in West Central Montana and it has a website. The main purpose of the data system and the website is to foster data-informed solutions to housing insecurity. The cHris has three functions: 

1 It provides agencies who work with people who are experiencing housing insecurity with a secure, "virtual space" where information can be entered and shared with partner agencies. Once analyzed, the information can identify gaps in services, and changes and trends in housing insecurity and better ways to address them. 

2 It takes a broad, data-informed approach to looking at housing insecurity. It educates about the complex factors that create housing insecurity and barriers to its solution (e.g., unemployment, underemployment, food insecurity, high medical costs, and low wages). The cHris website displays information from partner agencies about housing related issues and It compiles and shares links to YouTube videos and local reports on housing insecurity.

3 It links the community to resources that help address housing insecurity. It maps out and describes the system of community service providers and the role they play in addressing housing insecurity. 

Learn more about the cHris. 


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New Reports on the cHris website:

November 2015 "Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program Data Report
October 2009 – December 2010"

November 2015 "Community Housing Referral and Information System
1st Data Report 2014-2015"

August 2015 "Emergency Winter Shelter Program Report 2010-2014"  A report and analysis of the information collected from applications to the Emergency Winter Shelter Program from 2010 through 2014. (find on Agency Reports page)



1st cHris Informational Meeting was held Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Meeting agenda

Meeting minutes 

1st cHris Partner Meeting was held Thursday, October 23, 2014

Meeting agenda

Meeting minutes

 Find agendas and notes for past ESG Steering Committee and Data Quality Assurance (DQA) Committee Meetings.


The cHris gets some press! Check out the July 7, 2014 Missoulian article on the cHris.


To sign up for training, call Casey Gallagher at (406) 532-8253

cHris User Instructions


Send feedback to:


or call Casey Gallagher at (406) 532-8253

How cHris Can Help

The cHris helps community agencies coordinate services, use resources wisely and work together to create shared solutions for addressing housing insecurity, Similar integrated community data collection systems like those in Seattle and Phoenix, identify other benefits at the communiity level:

  • Speeds access to services
  • Eliminates the need for multiple interviews at multiple agencies
  • Streamlines the referral process
  • Improves the use of shelter resources 
  • Helps coordinate case management
  • Collects uniform data on those who access community services
  • Generates information on actual service needs and use
  • Identifies gaps in services
  • Improves information to guide decision-making


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