The Vermont Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) — part of the Department for Children and Families (DCF) — announced today that more than $4.6 million in federal and state funding was awarded to 40 non-profits across Vermont through the Housing & Opportunity Grant Program. These funds will be used to:
Provide emergency shelter and services;
Operate transitional housing;
Rapidly re-house homeless families and individuals into permanent housing; and
Prevent individuals and families from becoming homeless.
“There are many dedicated programs and talented individuals working in our communities to make sure everyone has a safe place to sleep and can find permanent housing,” said Agency of Human Services Secretary Hal Cohen. “The Agency of Human Services, Department for Children and Families, and Office of Economic Opportunity will continue working with our community partners to provide a seamless ‘continuum of care’ to Vermonters who are homeless or at risk of being homeless.” In this year’s granting process, a new emphasis was placed on strategies that have had proven results in communities across the nation. Collectively, the grantees will provide:
Year-round and seasonal emergency shelter;
Services and safety for victims fleeing violence;
Financial and rental support for those experiencing a housing crisis;
Tenant education and support; and
Transitional living programs for youth.
OEO works in close partnership with the Vermont Coalition to End Homelessness and the Chittenden Homeless Alliance to ensure state and federal resources are targeted to have the strongest collective impact. Last year’s grantees served more than 10,000 Vermonters in every area of the state. “Many would agree that we need more housing in Vermont,” said DCF Commissioner Ken Schatz. “Our challenge is to provide a strong safety net, clear the pathway to housing, and connect individuals and families with the supports they need to keep their housing. The Housing & Opportunity Grant Program provides our communities with resources to do just that.” For more information about the work of the Vermont Office of Economic Opportunity, go to http://dcf.vermont.gov/oeo. For the full summary of awards click here.