June 20 at 8:49am
Interfaith Community Services Awarded Nearly $200,000 From HUD to Alleviate Homelessness in North County
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced yesterday that Interfaith Community Services, headquartered in Escondido, will be receiving $194,640 as part of its second round of grants designed to end homelessness through a comprehensive plan conducted in coordination with County and nonprofit agencies across the nation.
Altogether, the HUD grants are designed to combat homelessness by funding “Rapid Rehousing” and “Housing First” models throughout the country, with Interfaith Community Services among the first in North County to transition its homelessness programs to these new “best practice” standards.
“Homelessness is one of the most urgent social problems we face as a community,” stated Greg Anglea, Interfaith’s Executive Director. “It is simply inexcusable for anyone – mother or father, son or daughter, grandparent, or military veteran – to suffer the debilitating hardship of living without basic shelter.”
These efforts make up a comprehensive, nationwide strategy to prevent and end veterans and chronic homelessness by 2015, and end homelessness among children, youth, and families by 2020. Opening Doors: Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness outlines that plan, put together by the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness.
“The reality is that homelessness is a symptom of a broad constellation of challenges people face,” added Anglea. “These include: unemployment, disability, domestic violence, addiction, and mental illness. Because of this, Interfaith is deeply committed working in collaboration with others to solve these problems for the good of everyone. That’s why we are proud to partner with HUD and the San Diego County Regional Continuum of Care to provide best practice programs and services to work toward solving this problem.”
More than 1,600 homeless individuals were found in North County on a single day last January, according to results of the Point-in-Time Count, released April 19 by the Regional Task Force on the Homeless. Among North County cities, Escondido had 554 homeless individuals, the highest number in the region. A total of 424 homeless were counted in Oceanside, 400 in Vista, 88 in Encinitas, 76 in Carlsbad and 42 in Solana Beach (remaining cities counted fewer than 10 each).
“The truth is,” added Anglea, “even with this grant, we have a long way to go. Every week we receive dozens of calls from families, individuals, seniors, and veterans who are desperately seeking affordable housing, but our programs are full. We need more resources and partnerships that will enable us to provide the housing and supportive care people need to get back on their feet for good.”
Interfaith Community Services has been “helping people help themselves” in North San Diego County since 1982. They provide a wide range of programs designed to help hungry, homeless, and low-income people get back on the road to stability. Each year, Interfaith helps more than 22,000 people towards this goal through programs and services that include food and basic needs, social services, shelters and housing, employment services, youth programs, senior services, veterans programs, and addiction recovery.
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