Member agencies of the Orange County Housing Collaborative met this month at Jamboree’s offices to observe a significant milestone: The placement of the first 40 formerly homeless individuals into permanent supportive housing. These efforts were initiated and made possible by a $2.5 million HUD grant awarded in January 2015 to house the chronically homeless, which specifically targeted the 114 most vulnerable individuals to be housed before June 2016.
To place 40 homeless people into homes in less than a year took an incredible amount of collaboration between partners who provide housing, and those offering supportive community services. Member agencies of the Collaborative include Mercy House Living Centers, Friendship Shelter, Colette’s Children’s Home, and Jamboree. Supportive services are being provided by Orangewood, and Share Our Selves.
There are now 40 people who were chronically homeless with severe needs who now not only have a home, but the opportunity to work with professionals to develop the life skills needed to remain stably housed. The lunch was an opportunity for the partners involved to share a meal together, reflect and celebrate a real achievement, as well as trade stories of what had worked and not worked, with a focus on how best to keep moving forward to achieve the 2016 goal.