Chicago, IL – September 25, 2013 – (RealEstateRama) — A team of local government and nonprofit leaders recently capped off a 100-day collaborative effort to end chronic homelessness in Chicago, resulting in over 400 individuals and families moving from the streets and into housing. Another 120 veterans, most of them chronically homeless, were issued rental assistance through the Jesse Brown VA Medical Center and Chicago Housing Authority federal grant partnership called VASH (Veteran’s Affairs Supportive Housing).
The “100-day Boot Camp” was supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Affairs (HUD), the U.S Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA), and the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness (ICH), convened by Community Solutions and the Rapid Results Institute and coordinated by CSH.
“The progress being made by the Federal, City and non-profit agencies participating in the 100-day boot camp, toward ending homelessness is inspiring,” said Antonio R. Riley, HUD’s Midwest Regional Administrator. “They are stopping the revolving door of emergency rooms, shelters and even jail in which so many of our homeless find themselves stuck. Preventing and ending homelessness is not only the right thing to do, but it actually saves money for the taxpayer – it’s smart government.”
The achievements are the direct result of the hands-on efforts of the VA, the City of Chicago, and over 50 private, non-profit, supportive housing agencies that provided housing or conducted street and shelter outreach. “The Boot Camp is proof that when agencies with a common goal work together real results can be achieved and because of this partnership, we have fewer people sleeping on the streets of Chicago tonight”, said Betsy Benito, CSH Director in Illinois. “CSH is excited that our Central Referral System (www.chicagocrs.org), a web-based housing application tool that prioritizes high-need applicants for supportive housing referrals, was integral to facilitating permanent housing for the most vulnerable in Chicago.” In the month of August, 90% of those housed by the VA and by housing providers accessing the CRS were chronically homeless. This subpopulation has long been under served by homeless-dedicated housing resources. Chicago is a priority community in ending homelessness and has been on the forefront of strategies and energy on the issue for over 10 years. Since joining the national 100,000 Homes Campaign in August 2010, Chicago has continued to identify and engage the most vulnerable and chronically homeless individuals and families, finding them a home in permanent supportive housing.
Leon, a 59 year-old from Chicago, was recently housed after applying through the CRS. He experienced homelessness for over 30 years and has struggled with addiction. Leon describes his transition from homelessness to housing as “an inspiration.” He is grateful for the services he receives in the supportive housing where he now resides and states that “this is the beginning for me.”
About the Boot Camp HUD is supporting Rapid Results Boot Camps across the country to engage leaders in strategic communities to raise their efforts and energy in meeting the federal goals of ending chronic and veteran’s homelessness in line with the Federal Strategic Plan to End Homelessness. Chicago, Suburban Cook County, Phoenix, Santa Clara, New York, New Orleans and Nashville, attended the May Boot Camp held in Chicago. Leaders from the key federal agencies participate on monthly calls and listen to what local communities need to reach their goals.
About CSH CSH transforms how communities use housing solutions to improve the lives of the most vulnerable people. We offer capital, expertise, information and innovation that allow our partners to use supportive housing to achieve stability, strength and success for the people in most need. CSH blends over 20 years of experience and dedication with a practical and entrepreneurial spirit, making us the source for housing solutions. CSH is an industry leader with national influence and deep connections in a growing number of local communities. We are headquartered in New York City with staff stationed in more than 20 locations around the country. Visit csh.org to learn how CSH has and can make a difference where you live.
Contact Betsy Benito 312.350.2551