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Uptown in the News  

February 11, 2004
Inside Online
Chicago's Plan to End Homelessness gets $32M in HUD funding

A $32 million funding award from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) brings Chicago steps closer to its 10-year goal of ending homelessness. The grants, part of the 2003 HUD SuperNOFA Continuum of Care grant, will fund 106 projects designed to help the homelessness. Chicago is one of the largest Continuum of Care grant recipients in the country.

Chicago's Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness focuses on moving from a system that provides temporary shelter, to one that places people quickly into permanent housing with ready access to support services. The stability provided by permanent housing is critical to ending the cycle of homelessness and promoting self-sufficiency. Supportive services will be more effective and the incentive greater when administered against the backdrop of a stable and safe living environment.

There are three categories of funding through the 2003 HUD SuperNOFA Continuum of Care grant: permanent supportive housing, transitional housing and supportive services.

Permanent supportive housing provides stable housing for homeless individuals and families with no time restrictions and the social services a client needs to maintain that housing. Transitional housing provides housing opportunities with a two-year maximum along with supportive services that help clients gain stability so they are better able to secure and maintain housing. Supportive services include case management, substance abuse treatment, job training and more.

Sample projects funded by the grant include permanent supportive housing by Lakefront Supportive Housing, an organization founded in 1986 to curb the loss of single room occupancy (SRO) housing in Chicago. The project calls for the development of 50 units of permanent supportive housing for single adults with chronic disabilities in the Near North area; the funding award is $2.4 million.

For transitional housing, Catholic Charities, the largest private provider of social services in the Midwest serving more than 800,000 annually, has been called to develop 84 new transitional leasing subsidies for homeless families in Pilsen/Little Village. Their funding award is $750,000.

For supportive services, Thresholds Incorporated, a psychiatric recovery center that provides comprehensive mental health services, will conduct mental health street outreach efforts for single adults with serious mental illness, who are homeless. These efforts will be conducted through their mobile assessment unit citywide with a funding award of $220,000.

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