PROVIDENCE, RI – In an effort to help coordinate housing and stabilization services for homeless families and individuals across Rhode Island, U.S. Senator Jack Reed, the Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation and Housing and Urban Development (THUD), today announced new federal grants to combat homelessness and called on the Trump Administration to swiftly make the funds available.
Today, after a tentative agreement was announced to reopen the federal government, Senator Reed announced $6,050,330 in federal Continuum of Care (CoC) grants for Rhode Island homeless assistance programs. This federal funding, administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) -- which has been shuttered for the last month by the Trump shutdown and forced to operate with only skeletal staff -- will support 32 homeless assistance projects around the state that enable local providers and community partners to deliver safe, affordable housing and supportive services to individuals and families experiencing homelessness in Rhode Island.
Reed, along with Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), Chairman of the THUD Appropriations Subcommittee, helped make the funds available by including more than $2.5 billion in targeted homeless assistance for fiscal year 2018, an increase of $263 million from the fiscal year 2018 Trump budget and $130 million above fiscal year 2017.
“The Trump shutdown impaired the federal government’s ability to deliver needed services and created real uncertainty and anxiety for people from all walks of life. The scheduled distribution of these funds offers needed boost to ensure we can serve our most vulnerable citizens who lack stable housing. These funds will help Rhode Islanders that lack stable housing get off the streets and into safe, sustainable housing,” said Senator Reed.
According to the most recent estimates from the Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless, about 1,100 Rhode Islanders are currently experiencing homelessness.
Despite the Trump shutdown, volunteers fanned out across the state this week for the annual point-in-time count, a census-like count that documents the number of Rhode Islanders experiencing homelessness on a given night in January. Volunteers collect updated information and demographics from those experiencing homelessness to help provide a count and assist non-profits and government agencies direct resources to assist homeless Rhode Islanders.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development mandates a “sheltered” count annually, and a full count every other year during one day during the last ten days of January.
“These funds can help save lives while also saving taxpayer dollars. From homeless veterans who could be struggling with PTSD or families that are facing eviction and at risk of becoming homeless, these grants help stabilize vulnerable individuals and families,” said Senator Reed. “We must keep fighting homelessness throughout the state and across the nation, and these funds are vital to keeping that commitment.”
The federal CoC grants are coordinated at the state level by Rhode Island Housing, and jointly administered by non-profits throughout the state. These funds offer a variety of housing and services including transitional and permanent supportive housing, rapid re-housing, street outreach, client assessment, and other services. Grants will support multiple projects, including programs run by Foster Forward, a Rhode Island advocacy organization for youth aging out of foster care, and the Community Care Alliance, a Woonsocket-based non-profit that will help rapidly rehouse youths in northern Rhode Island.
Senator Reed has been a strong supporter of housing assistance and homelessness prevention initiatives and has led efforts in the Senate to increase funding to address the root causes of homelessness. Reed is the author of the Homeless Emergency Assistance and Rapid Transition to Housing (HEARTH) Act, which President Obama signed into law in May of 2009. This legislation streamlined and boosted homeless assistance and prevention grant programs and required the development of a “national strategic plan” to end homelessness. This plan, Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness, was produced and led by the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness and serves as the national roadmap to end veteran and chronic homelessness, as well as to end homelessness among children, family, and youth.
State and local homeless projects receiving the competitive federal grants include:
Amos House / 414 Friendship Street: $39,093
Amos House / Amos House Swan Street: $47,920
Community Care Alliance / Burnside Ave. Permanent Supportive Housing: $57,536
Community Care Alliance / Constitution Hill Supportive Housing Program: $137,231
Community Care Alliance / Rapid Re-Housing of Northern Rhode Island (Youth Project): $34,229
Community Care Alliance / Rapid Re-Housing of Northern Rhode Island 2018: $138,306
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-70 Linwood Apartments: $183,545
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Family PSH: $149,232
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Permanent Housing for Disabled Elders: $93,758
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-PH for Disabled Adults: $93,320
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Rapid Rehousing for Families: $190,482
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-RI Family Shelter: $57,325
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Travelers Aid Housing: $33,083
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Travelers Aid of RI: $44,007
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Tremont Street Apartments: $77,578
Crossroads Rhode Island / Crossroads-Whitmarsh House Apartments: $110,135
East Bay Community Action Program / East Bay Coalition for the Homeless Permanent Housing: $48,081
Foster Forward / Rapid Rehousing for Former Foster Youth: $236,658
House of Hope Community Development Corporation / ACCESS to Home: $304,295
House of Hope Community Development Corporation / Fair House: $39,464
House of Hope Community Development Corporation / Warwick PSH- Consolidated: $128,675
Housing Authority of the City of Pawtucket, RI, The / Paw HA RRH Renewal: $225,674
Lucy's Hearth / Lucy's Hearth PSH Program: $41,530
Operation Stand Down Rhode Island / West Warwick: $177,973
Rhode Island Coalition for the Homeless / HMIS Renewal: $152,064
Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation / RIHousing Rental Assistance: $162,283
Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation / RIHousing – SBRA: $1,977,250
Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation / RIHousing – TBRA: $780,171
Sojourner House / Sojourner House Rapid Re-Housing Renewal: $154,728
Westbay Community Action / East, Earl, & Warwick Avenue: $27,811
Westerly Area Rest Meals Inc. / Greater Westerly Supportive Housing Project: $56,230
YWCA Rhode Island / YWCA Rhode Island Sarah Frances Grant Homestead: $50,663