Ashley Greenfield

Rutland County Family Shelter Support

Ashley Greenfield
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As many of you know, the Shelter Committee, a sub-committee of our Continuum of Care (CoC), has been meeting for over four years. Our initial goal was to map area resources and gaps of Rutland’s homeless system to provide us an understanding for areas of growth. Since then, we have worked collaboratively to develop programs and systems of care to target families and individuals experiencing homelessness.

During our mapping process, we discovered that Rutland County’s greatest gap in services is stability for homeless families that enter through the state funded General Assistance (GA) hotel program. Families entering into the GA hotel program do not have the best possible outcomes for families living in poverty. The most detrimental piece of this gap isn’t the motels themselves, but the immense adverse experience associated with being homeless. This challenge of emergency resources combined with the lack of affordable and safe housing leads to costly cycling through crisis-driven systems.

It is with great pleasure and enthusiasm that I, alongside the entire Shelter Committee, share the latest update with the CoC and ask for a show of support:

  • Joe Giancola has purchased the former Red Cross building, at the entrance to the Howe Center, and has agreed to renovate the building for a family shelter.
  • The Shelter Committee will seek funding through multiple state and local sources.
  • The Homeless Prevention Center will provide onsite services:
  • Assessment: Housing history, housing goals and housing challenges will be assessed along with the family’s strengths, challenges and past housing experiences, both positive and negative.
  • Coordination of services: Identify and connect community services to be involved as dictated by the family’s needs. The number and types of services may grow or diminish as they move through the housing plan into permanent housing.
  • Housing plan: Assist in developing a housing plan based on the assessment. Clear goals will be established by the client not housing specialist.

On April 7, 2017, members of the shelter committee will meet with Mayor Allaire to bring him up to speed on our efforts and seek municipal support for this much needed facility. We will need documented support from the municipality as well as the CoC before ANY grant proposals can be submitted.

What do we need from you? We need a show of support from community partners, agencies, and individuals. The Shelter Committee is asking that you sign on in a show of support. Any and all support is greatly appreciated. We ask that you sign on prior to the meeting with Mayor Allaire on April 7, 2017. However, the petition will remain open past that date to obtain as many signatures as possible. Thank you.

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