A great little article from up in Oneida, NY notes the importance of the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program. In Madison County, the Community Action Partnership (CAP) took their HPRP stimulus money and used it to extend short-term, temporary housing assistance for nearly a hundred families in the community.
According to the executive director of CAP, this temporary assistance can be a “soft gap” for people waiting to qualify for Section 8 housing vouchers or for those who need a little extra time before achieving self-sufficiency. The program has been “phenomenal,” not only aiding vulnerable families and providing budgeting counseling but also preventing hundreds of instances of homelessness in the neighborhood.
Things are less phenomenal in Las Vegas, NV where public schools are witnessing an influx of homeless students – an increase of 15 percent according to this morning’s article on the issue. Officials in Nevada note the affect – particularly hard in that state – of three year’s of recession the state resulting in persistent unemployment and, sometimes, job loss (a lagging indicator, as we’ve noted.) The story notes a specific increase in the number of “couch surfers” and doubled up families. Homeless youth are even more vulnerable than their adult counterparts, at higher risk to violence, abuse, and crime.
New York caused a bit of a buzz earlier this week when it announced the city’s Department of Homeless Services decided to run a study to determine if prevention services proved effective at helping people avoid homelessness (CNN ran a decent article about this). This meant that of 400 families randomly selected for the program, half would receive services and the other half wouldn’t. Needless to say, the move has sparked uproar in the community despite the fact that, “The DHS is stressing the fact that all group members were aware they might be chosen to participate in the study and have signed informed consent forms agreeing to the terms.“
And, if you really want to read an article about the Homeless World Cup, this is a pretty good one. While soccer is no solution to homelessness, writer Michael Fox does a good job of explaining the tournament and placing in the context of a larger, national effort.
Note: we’re taking Monday off (federal holiday – controversial or not), but will be back on Tuesday. Happy three-day weekend!