HUD Awards Billions for Homeless Services
Grants totalling $1.8 billion were awarded to housing and homeless services programs around the nation by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on Monday, January 26. Throughout the country, funds are distributed to each Continuums of Care or network of housing and homeless services providers. Homeless services including prevention, street outreach, emergency shelter, transitional housing and permanent supportive housing. The Community Partnership for the Prevention of Homelessness, a local nonprofit, manages the funds for the District’s Continuum.
Washington received $21,213,687 of the HUD funds to support 68 programs across the city. The Community Partnership will distribute $173,581 to New Endeavors by Women, to manage a permanent supportive housing program formerly operated by Rachael’s Women’s Center. Rachael’s closed its doors–along with the meals, showers, case management and other day services it provided–last September after 35 years of operation.
Nationally, HUD funded 25 new projects to provide permanent supportive housing for people experiencing chronic homelessness. HUD defines a person as chronically homeless if she or he has a disabling condition, has been continuously homeless for a year or more or has had at least four episodes of homelessness in the past three years. Permanent supportive housing provides a stable residence along with services such as physical and mental health care and treatment for addiction.
“It’s a national shame that anyone would call the streets their home,” said HUD Secretary Julian Castro. “As a nation, we can and must end homelessness.”
2015 marks HUD’s 50th anniversary. The department estimates that 578,424 people experienced homelessness on any given night in 2014, and continues to make progress towards the goals of Opening Doors, the comprehensive federal plan that was established in 2010 to end homelessness.
Opening Doors aims to end veterans homelessness by 2015, chronic homelessness by 2016 and homelessness among children, families and youth by 2020.In January of this year New Orleans declared an end to veteran homelessness.
“Communities across the country are driving progress by implementing the strategies that work to end homelessness–Housing First, permanent supportive housing, and rapid rehousing,” Matthew Doherty, Interim Executive Director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness said.