Delaware awarded $7.8 million in grants that will assist homeless

DOVER — Sens. Tom Carper and Chris Coons and Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester announced on Thursday a $7.8 million in grant awards from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to organizations in Delaware.

The Continuum of Care

(CoC) competitively awarded grants will benefit 27 programs and groups that assist Delaware’s homeless population.

The HUD CoC grant funding is designed to support the commitment of ending homelessness; provide funding for efforts by nonprofit providers and state and local governments to quickly rehouse homeless individuals and families while minimizing the trauma and dislocation caused by homelessness; promote access to and effect utilization of mainstream programs by displaced individuals and families; and optimize self-sufficiency among folk experiencing homelessness.

“This funding will go a long way to helping the organizations on the front lines that work to lift Delawareans out of homelessness,” said Sen. Carper. “But we must not rest here. It is crucial that we continue looking at the root causes of homelessness and poverty so that our neighbors can make permanent transitions to safe, affordable housing.”

Sen. Coons said the funding is critical in helping Delaware’s homeless population.

“I have a deep appreciation for the work of homelessness service providers and the impact of federal investments in homelessness programs after having worked as a staff advocate for the Coalition for the Homeless,” he said. “The 7.8 million in Continuum of Care grants awarded to 27 projects in Delaware will go towards providing temporary and permanent housing options and supportive services for homeless individuals and families, including unaccompanied youth and veterans.”

According to HUD’s 2019 Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress, on a single night last year, roughly 568,000 people were experiencing homelessness throughout the country. Between 2018 and 2019, Delaware was the state with the most significant percentage decline (20 percent) in the number of homeless individuals.

A Continuum of Care is an organized group that is responsible for coordinating a full range of homelessness services in a geographic area, which may cover a city, county, metropolitan area, or an entire state. Housing Alliance Delaware is the CoC lead agency in Delaware.

“In support of some of the most vulnerable residents of our state, we are grateful to the congressional delegation and to HUD for the Continuum of Care grants,” said Delaware Department of Health and Social Services Secretary Dr. Kara Odom Walker, a practicing family physician. “The community partners who receive these grants provide critical support to Delawareans who are homeless until we can transition them into permanent places to live. And on cold nights like the ones we’ve just experienced, we see just how important it is for everyone to have a safe and warm place to go.”