Valley News – Grant to help NH homeless youth

Published: 08/15/2022 21:41:10

Modified: 08/15/2022 21:37:42

New Hampshire will receive more than $2 million in grants to address youth homelessness statewide through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In a press release this week, the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services announced new efforts to prevent and end youth homelessness.

The grant will be used in partnership with the Youth Success Project of New Hampshire, which is a council of youth in the state who experienced homelessness before they turned 25. The council supports youth advocacy against housing instability.

Nationally, continuum of care programs enable community-wide engagement to end homelessness in an area. In the Concord region, the Continuum of Care region is called Balance of State, which includes all geographies outside of Manchester and Nashua.

The new funding will support the Coordinated Community Plan, an action plan to address homelessness, for balancing the state’s continuum of care.

The Youth Success Project has previously worked alongside the DHHS Housing Support Office to create the Coordinated Community Plan to include their perspective as previously homeless youth. This work began in the fall of 2021.

“It was empowering to be able to be part of this process and have a voice in how the money will be spent to improve the lives of young people facing housing instability,” said Maddison Lemay, a leader of the YSP, in a press release.

The funding will support the implementation of the plan, which includes project proposals like strengthening the homelessness management information system to include specific data points on youth populations.

In addition to supporting the action plan, nonprofit organizations that provide housing services, such as Waypoint and the Tri-County Community Action Partnership, among others, will also receive funding.

These organizations provide housing and assistance to homeless youth and the new funding will further support the development and maintenance of services.

“All young people in New Hampshire should have access to safe and stable housing and this is a huge step in the right direction,” said DHHS Commissioner Lori Shibinette. “This critical funding will allow us to continue our work with community partners and youth with lived experience to identify barriers to housing for our youth and implement plans in our communities that address them head-on.” .

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