UNION COUNTY – Union County will receive a grant of $3,426,758 from the Continuum of Care Homeless Assistance program of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These federal dollars provide permanent and transitional housing for homeless individuals and families as well as support services such as job training, mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment and child care.
HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced the grant in a statement released Dec. 20, 2011.
“According to a January 2011 survey, 584 children were counted among 1,471 homeless people in Union County,” Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella said. “The Freeholder Board is thankful that the county will be receiving these funds, and hopeful that with them we can improve the quality of life for these members of our community.”
Each year the Department of Human Services works closely with community partners like Bridgeway Rehabilitation Services, Inc., Community Access Unlimited, the Community Access Institute, the Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless, Homefirst Interfaith Housing and Family Services, Inc., and the YMCA and YWCA of Eastern Union County, to accurately gauge the County’s needs and resources, in order to submit a comprehensive joint application to the federal government.
“This high degree of professionalism and cooperation enables Union County to obtain additional funding for vital programs like these on a competitive basis,” noted Frank Guzzo, Director of the Union County Department of Human Services.
Since 1998 this collaborative cooperation has resulted in Union County receiving $35.3 million in federal grants to help support the operation of programs that serve the homeless. Nationwide, for fiscal year 2011, HUD awarded $1.47 billion in homeless grants for renewal projects.
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