The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded $3.4 million to prevent and end homelessness among young people in Louisville, Kentucky. HUD’s Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program (YHDP), supports a wide range of housing interventions including rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, transitional housing, and host homes.
HUD’s is awarding $3.45 million to the Coalition for the Homeless, Inc which successfully and innovatively addressed homelessness through specific initiatives targeting homeless subpopulations especially youth leveraging city and community support in housing, education, employment and other supportive services.
“Young people who are victims of abuse, family conflict, or aging out of foster care are especially vulnerable to homelessness,” said HUD Secretary Ben Carson. “We’re working with our local partners to support innovative new approaches to help young people find stable housing, break the cycle of homelessness and lead them on a path to self-sufficiency.”
“One of the things we learned last year in our city’s very successful 100-Day Challenge to house homeless youth is that to really meet these young citizens’ needs, we have to understand each of them as individuals, where they’ve come from, what they’ve been through and what challenges they’re facing,” said Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer. “We also saw that with greater resources, we could, with partners like the Coalition for the Homeless, do even more. And that’s what makes today’s announcement so exciting – it will allow us to house more young people, and get them on the path to a healthy, stable and productive life.”
“The youth and young adults of our community are our future, but they are also our present. As a community, we must help them succeed through housing, education, employment and other supports,” said Natalie Harris, the Executive Director of the Coalition for the Homeless.” By working together, Louisville was able to meet the challenge of reducing the number of homeless youth and young adults by half. This award will help us reach the final goal of housing any homeless youth in our community and providing them with the resources to succeed.”
“This is an important new investment in our common cause…to confront and ultimately eliminate youth homelessness here in Louisville, Kentucky,” said HUD SE Deputy Regional Adminstrator
Christopher Taylor. “More importantly, we come together today to make a common statement about this vexing problem of youth homelessness. We cannot…we must not…accept young people living on our streets and in our shelters.
To ensure the Youth Homelessness Prevention Demonstration Program meets the needs of young people, HUD relied upon the recommendations of young people who experienced homelessness themselves. Many of these same young people participated in reviewing the applications of communities seeking YHDP funds. Their input helped ensure that the communities selected for funding understand the needs and preferences of the young people they will serve. HUD also worked closely with its federal partners at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Department of Education (DOE), and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) to help develop the program and review applications.
HUD selected 11 communities nationwide which will collaborate with a broad array of partners including a youth action board and the local or state public child welfare agency. These communities now have four months to develop and submit to HUD a coordinated community plan to prevent and end youth homelessness. They will also participate in a program evaluation to inform the federal effort to prevent and end youth homelessness going forward and will serve as leaders in the nation on the work to end homelessness among young people.
YHDP recipients will use funding for rapid rehousing, permanent supportive housing, and transitional housing, and to fund innovative programs, such as host homes. Recipients can begin requesting funding for specific projects as soon as they are ready. YHDP will also support youth-focused performance measurement and coordinated entry systems. Over the next several months, selected communities will work with their youth advisory boards, child welfare agencies, and other community partners to create a comprehensive community plan to end youth homelessness.