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Stimulus Funds Help Families on Verge of Homelessness

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A partnership between the County Department of Housing and Community Development and the County Office of Education is helping local families who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Housing and Community Development, or HCD, received more than $1.9 million in federal stimulus funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program.  The program helps people and families facing a sudden financial crisis that could lead to homelessness, providing them with short-term and medium-term rental assistance and services.

After the County found out it would be eligible for the funds, HCD worked the Regional Continuum of Care Council, a group made up of local non-profits and homeless advocates, to identify priorities for using the funds.  Based on the group’s recommendations, HCD and the County Office of Education formed a partnership to target schoolchildren and their families.

The County Office of Education refers families in need by working with homeless liaisons in more than 30 local school districts within HCD’s jurisdiction, which includes the unincorporated areas of the county and the cities of Coronado, Del mar, Imperial Beach, Lemon Grove, Poway and Solana Beach.

Thirty-one families have already received help through the program, and HCD expects to assist a total of about 150 families. Sixty percent of the funds must be used within two years, and all of the funds must be used within three years.

For additional information about homeless assistance, please visit the Housing and Community Development Web site.