The state government is disbursing $3.8 million in state and federal aid to 37 organization that provide temporary housing.
The Shelter Support grants will aid nonprofit agencies operating emergency homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities and assist approximately 3,000 families in keeping a roof over their heads over the next year.
These aid will be used, in part, to abate housing code violations, address life safety issues, create additional bed space and support the 1,652 beds in existing homeless shelters and transitional housing, resulting in improved living conditions for homeless individuals, victims of domestic violence and military veterans.
Funding for the grants is a combination of state appropriation and money from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development. The grants are administered through the state Division of Housing and Community Resources.
Since 2003, the state Department of Community Affairs has awarded 294 grants totaling $42,050,750 to nonprofit and service organizations that run homeless shelters and transitional housing facilities. As a result of the grants 1,452 beds have been created and more than 3,200 individuals are helped each year.
“The long-term effects of the global recession underscore how important even the basic necessities are to families and veterans in crisis – things that so many of us take for granted, such as a decent meal and a safe, warm place to sleep,” Gov. Chris Christie said in a statement. “While my administration continues to make progress on the larger economic and quality of life goals facing the state, it is important to reinforce our commitment to service by making this grant funding available to local service organizations that are in a position to help make a difference in the lives of our most vulnerable citizens.”
“When families arrive at a shelter, they’ve normally exhausted every resource they have in an effort to avoid homelessness,” DCA Commissioner Lori Grifa said. “Some have made enormous sacrifices just to keep a roof over their heads. These grants will help local and faith-based organizations provide people with a warm, dry place to stay until they can regain their financial footing and move into more permanent housing.”