Charleston seeks grant to expand homeless outreach team
CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) – The Charleston Department of Housing and Development is requesting nearly half a million dollars in federal grants to help bolster its efforts to end homelessness in the holy city.
The city partners with the Continuum of Care, a network of providers that works with people to find long-term solutions to homelessness. The Lowcountry Chapter serves seven counties: Charleston, Berkeley, Dorchester, Colleton, Beaufort, Jasper and Hampton counties.
He works with cities and nonprofits to secure funding and create programs.
The city hopes to use the grant money to add more people to its outreach team. Team members connect with homeless people in Charleston and work to build relationships and offer them resources.
The city team currently has two positions, but the goal is to secure the necessary funding to pay the salaries of two other team members for three years. The grant application will request $450,000 with a city match of $112,500.
Geona Shaw Johnson, director of the Charleston Department of Housing and Community Development, says the bid is still in its early stages, but she’s hopeful.
“Collectively, we easily reached over 100 members, 100 of our homeless neighbors in the last two or three months,” she says. “We want to expand this in a way that reduces the number of people needing to shelter in place, ensuring that they are aware of the services available to them. Sometimes they’re aware, sometimes they’re not, so it’s really just a way to extend our reach and hopefully increase our effectiveness.
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