More than 1,500 Greater Hartford individuals and families who are homeless or facing homelessness will receive much needed help thanks to the work of six area nonprofit agencies and funding of more than $1.1 million from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.
Grants were awarded to AIDS Connecticut ($102,000), Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness ($30,000), Corporation for Supportive Housing ($300,000), ImmaCare ($144,000), My Sisters' Place ($220,000) and The Salvation Army ($326,544), to provide a broad range of services designed to prevent or eliminate homelessness in the Capitol Region, including "no-freeze" efforts to provide temporary shelter during the winter months.
While the region and the state has made progress to address the issue of homelessness in recent years, there is still more work to do. Homelessness among families in the Capital Region has steadily decreased since 2009. Connecticut has been recognized as the first state in the nation to effectively end chronic homelessness among veterans. Results from the 2016 Point-in-Time Count (conducted by the Connecticut Coalition to End Homelessness and funded by the Hartford Foundation) indicate that chronic homelessness has declined more than three percent since 2015 and 13 percent since 2007. Yet the difficulty of finding and keeping affordable permanent housing is still a significant challenge.
"Many families and individuals of modest means are still unable to afford current rents or spend an untenable amount of their income to secure even substandard housing," said Sharon O'Meara, director of community investments at the Hartford Foundation. "These grants support both short-term and long-term strategies to address homelessness. This funding will allow organizations to continue services, expand services, and create a more collaborative and coordinated way to address the issue of ending homelessness."
Some of the expected outcomes of these grants include:
"Homelessness is a solvable issue and the collaborative efforts of nonprofit agencies in our region demonstrate that collective action can make a big difference," O'Meara said. "These proposals reflect a continuum of interconnected strategies ranging from sheltering to advocacy necessary to solve the problem of homelessness."
The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving is the community foundation for Hartford and 28 surrounding communities. In 2015, the Foundation celebrated ninety years of grantmaking in the Greater Hartford region, made possible by the gifts of generous individuals, families and organizations. It has awarded grants of more than $680 million since its founding in 1925. For more information about the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, visit www.hfpg.org or call 860-548-1888.