BOSTON — Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh announced that the City of Boston has received nearly $26.3 million in federal funding in support of Boston’s homelessness programs.
Boston was awarded the funding as the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced the results of its annual 2018 McKinney Homeless Continuum of Care funding competition.
“Our city’s success depends on providing opportunities for all of our residents, making sure everyone has a safe, stable home and the support they need to succeed,” said Mayor Walsh. “These funds will help us do the work of getting homeless Bostonians access to critical services and housing. I want to thank HUD and the entire Massachusetts delegation for their continued support.”
“We commend Mayor Walsh and his team, along with our local homeless service providers for their dedicated efforts towards helping our homeless neighbors find stable housing,” said David Tille, HUD New England Regional Administrator. “HUD is proud to provide this funding to the City of Boston team to assist in furthering their plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness.”
The Walsh Administration, which has made ending homelessness a priority, will apply this HUD funding to programs that support Boston’s Way Home, the City’s plan to end chronic and veteran homelessness. Through the efforts of Boston’s Way Home, Boston has ended chronic veteran homelessness, and has housed 1,600 formerly homeless people.
The programs funded cover a range of services and supports, including housing search, the creation of housing for chronically homeless people, rapid re-housing funds, and stabilization services to allow newly housed chronically homeless individuals to receive the supports they need to succeed.
Organizations funded include Bay Cove, Bridge Over Troubled Waters, Casa Myrna, FamilyAid, Heading Home, HomeStart, Kit Clark Senior Services, Project Hope, Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance, Metro Housing Boston, New England Center and Home for Veterans, Pine Street Inn, St. Francis House, and Victory Programs.
During Mayor Walsh’s inauguration in 2018, he announced the launch of Boston’s Way Home Fund, which has a goal of raising over $10 million over the course of four years to create 200 new units of supportive, sustainable, long-term housing for chronically homeless men and women. After one year, $5 million has already been pledged in support of this effort.
On Wednesday, Mayor Walsh will lead Boston’s 39th annual Homeless Census. Mayor Walsh and City and State officials, civic, faith, non-profit and business leaders and volunteers as they canvass Boston for the City’s annual homeless census. The census will record information about all homeless individuals in Boston, including those who are living on the street, in emergency shelters, domestic violence programs, transitional housing, and in specialized programs serving homeless youth and veterans.
The Continuum of Care is a federal program designed to end homelessness by supporting community-wide systems of care, providing funding not only to state and local partners, but also to nonprofit providers who are part of the Continuum. This approach creates a more strategic use of resources, while improving coordination and integration between programs. It has also been found to improve data collection and performance measurement; and has the benefit of allowing communities to tailor programs to the particular resources, organizations, and challenges of that community.
The application for the 2018 Continuum of Care competition was submitted by the Supportive Housing Division of the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development, in partnership with all of the organizations that make up Boston’s Continuum of Care, including the Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC), Pine Street Inn, HomeStart, and many other housing providers across the City. The application consisted of hundreds of data points and narratives about Boston’s system and programs, along with 45 individual project applications to support thousands of the most vulnerable Bostonians on a path to permanent, sustainable supportive housing. So far, HUD has only announced Continuum of Care funding for renewal projects, and expects to announce a second round of funding for new programs at a later date. The City has applied for an additional $3 million in funding for new programs.