WARSAW — The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded $17.9 million to support 105 homeless housing and service programs in Indiana. The Continuum of Care Competition grants announced Dec. 20 provide critically needed housing and support services to individuals and families experiencing homelessness across the state.
Locally, the Kosciusko County Shelter for Abuse, more commonly known as The Beaman Home, Rapid Rehousing program is receiving $76,535. The money goes towards rental assistance, helping domestic violence survivors get back on their feet.
The Rapid Rehousing program aids in establishing a violence free home for women and their families who have been the victims of violence and suffer from abuse. Funded by HUD, the program assists victims on their path to survive on their own by providing financial assistance in securing an apartment away from the violence they were fleeing.
The emergency shelter program at Beaman is a limited program of only 45 days. Rapid Rehousing allows women who have sought shelter from domestic violence an opportunity to start a new life by offering up to six months of rental assistance to place the women and their families in an apartment.
Tracie Hodson, the executive director at The Beaman Home, stated that while the amount seems like a lot it goes fast. “By the time you start helping with rental assistance, it goes quickly,” commented Hodson. “We were able to help around 24 families last year [with the funds].”
Hodson explained that there are eligibility requirements and the women who participate are “literally homeless.”
“Around 90 percent of women that come through our doors have extremely limited income,” stated Hodson. The Rapid Rehousing program allows the women and their families to not stress about where they are sleeping at night, and instead focus on “making sure they have a job and their kids are secure.”
While the assistance program and the Continuum of Care have gone through some name changes, Beaman Home has been receiving the financial assistance since the mid-90s. The Rapid Rehousing program emerged in 2014.
All of the money received from CoCC goes directly into an account used for rental assistance and directly paying landlords, with a minute amount being used for case management.
“This funding will continue to build upon existing efforts to end homelessness and support individuals, youth and families across Indiana when they need it most,” said HUD Midwest Regional Administrator, Antonio R. Riley. “It will go a long way put them on the path towards dignity and independence.”