Department of Human Services | Christie Administration Awards State Rental Assistance Program Vouchers and Service Funding through the Statewide Housing First Initiative
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Vouchers Will Assist Chronically Homeless Individuals and Homeless Veterans

Trenton, NJ – Continuing the Administration’s efforts to reduce homelessness in New Jersey, Department of Community Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Charles A. Richman today announced that 12 nonprofit organizations have been selected to manage the distribution of 500 State Rental Assistance Program (SRAP) vouchers and service funding through a new program in New Jersey announced by Governor Christie in March, known as “Housing First.” The initiative provides $5.4 million in annualized funding for rental assistance and $250,000 in additional funding for coordinated services. 

Housing First is an innovative, nationally recognized approach to ending homelessness.  The program has been successful in keeping the costliest, most vulnerable, long-term and chronically homeless patients stably housed, dramatically reducing unnecessary hospitalizations, emergency room visits and incarcerations. Under the New Jersey Housing First program, 500 tenant-based rental vouchers will be allocated to chronically homeless households and/or homeless veterans who are high utilizers of public systems.

“These awards will have a significant impact on the lives of the individuals and families who receive the rent vouchers associated with this initiative,” said Commissioner Richman. “The foundation of this program is the immediate placement in housing along with careful coordination of services customized to meet the particular needs of chronically homeless households. This Administration continues to work toward ending the cycle of homelessness by providing housing, counseling, job development and other services as are necessary to reduce reliance on government interventions and improve the quality of their lives.”

Last year, the DCA, along with the Department of Human Services, supported the Camden Housing First Initiative and dedicated 50 project-based Housing Choice Vouchers to high utilizers of emergency room services. This was the Department’s first experience with the Housing First concept. Confident that the approach is sound, Commissioner Richman is enthusiastic about bringing the program to communities across the state.

An RFP was issued in April 2016 requesting proposals from nonprofit agencies interested in providing permanent housing and supportive services to chronically homeless households and homeless veterans who ae high utilizers of public systems.  Of the applications received, 12 organizations were selected to receive and administer tenant-based vouchers and service funding to serve the following counties: Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Passaic, Salem and Union.

The selected organizations have experience with assisting households in finding housing and providing ongoing supportive services, including but not limited to medical services, mental health, case management, substance abuse treatment and employment training.


Housing First Initiative Award List

 

Lead Agency

County or Counties of Service

Award Amount

Project Description

Legacy Treatment Services

Burlington

25 vouchers

$12,500 in service funding

 

The Burlco Housing-Wellness Collaborative will serve 25 chronically homeless households with a mental illness, who are frequent users of the county jail, local hospitals, and/or the Screening and Crisis Intervention Program for Burlington County. Partners in this project include Legacy Treatment Services, Virtua, and Burlington County.

Coming Home of Middlesex County, Inc.

Middlesex

33 vouchers

$16,500 in service funding

The Middlesex Housing First for the Chronically Homeless Project will serve 33 chronically homeless households identified through the Middlesex County Coordinated Assessment process. Partners in this project include Coming Home of Middlesex County, Rutgers – University Behavioral Healthcare, Triple C Housing, Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services, and Volunteers of America.

Mental Health Association of Essex County, Inc.

Essex

35 vouchers

$17,500 in service funding

The Bell Project will serve 35 chronically homeless households, 25 of whom will have a primary mental health diagnosis and 10 of whom will have a primary substance abuse diagnosis. Partners in this project include the Mental Health Association of Essex County and Integrity House.

Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services, Inc.

Union

35 vouchers

$17,500 in service funding

The Union County Housing First Consortium will serve 35 chronically homeless households who are frequent users of public systems, particularly behavioral health systems. Partners in this project include Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services, Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless, Trinitas, Mt. Carmel Guild, Community Asset Preservation Corporation, Volunteers of America, Union County Department of Human Services, Central Jersey Legal Services, Plainfield YMCA, Salvation Army, and Community Health Law Project.

Collaborative Support Programs of NJ

Hudson

100 vouchers

$50,000 in service funding

The Hudson County SRAP Housing First Initiative will serve 100 of the most frequent users of the Hudson County Jail who are chronically homeless. Partners in this project include Collaborative Support Programs of NJ, Garden State Episcopal Community Development Corporation, the Hudson County Alliance to End Homelessness, the Hudson County Division of Housing and Community Development, and the Hudson County Department of Corrections.

Jewish Family Service of Atlantic and Cape May Counties

Atlantic

50 vouchers

$25,000 in service funding

The Atlantic County Housing First Initiative will serve 40 chronically homeless households who are frequent users of public systems, particularly healthcare and correctional systems, and 10 homeless veteran households. Partners in this project include Jewish Family Service, the Atlantic County Justice Facility, and AtlantiCare.

 

Mental Health Association of Morris County

Morris

50 vouchers

$25,000 in service funding

The Morris County Permanent Housing Consortium will serve 50 chronically homeless households who are frequent users of public systems, particularly behavioral healthcare systems. Partners in this project include the Mental Health Association of Morris County, Family Promise, Community Hope, Homeless Solutions, New Jersey AIDS Services, and NewBridge Services. 

 

Oaks Integrated Care

Mercer

25 vouchers

$12,500 in service funding

The Housing First Project of Mercer County will serve 25 chronically homeless households who are frequent users of public systems who are referred through the CEAS Center, Mercer County’s coordinated and centralized entry system for the homeless. Partners in this project include the Trenton/Mercer Continuum of Care, Mercer County Department of Human Services, and the Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness.

 

NJ Community Development Corporation

Passaic

50 vouchers

$25,000 in service funding

The Passaic County Housing First Initiative will serve 50 chronically homeless households with a severe and persistent mental illness. Partners in this project include Eva’s Village, Mental Health Association in Passaic County, Passaic County One Stop Career Center, County of Passaic Department of Weatherization and Home Energy, County of Passaic Paratransit Program, CUMAC, Volunteers of America, and St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center.

 

Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden

Atlantic, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Salem

30 vouchers

$15,000 in service funding

The Housing First and Supportive Services Project for Southern New Jersey will serve 30 homeless veteran households. Catholic Charities, Diocese of Camden is the Veterans Administrative Supportive Services for Veterans and Families (SSVF) provider in this area.

 

Gateway Community Action Partnership

Cumberland

42 vouchers

$21,000 in service funding

The Cumberland County Housing First Program will serve 42 chronically homeless households who are frequent users of public systems. Partners in this project include Gateway Community Action Partnership, Resources for Independent Living, Puerto Rican Action Committee (PRAC), Revive South Jersey, M25 Initiative, CompleteCare, Cumberland County Jail, and Inspira Health Network.

 

 

Volunteers of America Delaware Valley

Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Salem, Mercer

25 vouchers

$12,500 in service funding

The Housing First Initiative will serve 25 homeless veteran households who are frequent users of criminal justice, child welfare or hospital emergency care systems.

 

 

The Department’s Division of Housing and Community Resources strengthens and revitalizes communities through the delivery of affordable housing, supportive services and the provision of financial and technical assistance to communities, local government and community based organizations.

 

 
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