The CT Balance of State has received $6.6 milling in federal funding to end youth homelessness in the state by the end of 2020 through Opening Doors CT, the statewide effort to end homelessness.
Announced Friday, January 13, 2017, the grant is part of $33 million to help youth that are experiencing homelessness nationwide through the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program. Connecticut is one of only ten grantees, chosen from 130 nationwide applicants.
Opening Doors CT is being implemented through the statewide Reaching Home Campaign. Reaching Home involves over 200 local, state, and federal partners from multiple systems and sectors focused on ending homelessness amongst multiple populations. The Youth and Young Adult Homelessness Workgroup spearheads the Campaign’s efforts to end youth homelessness in the state.
The award is an acknowledgement of Connecticut’s work to date, and an extraordinary opportunity to utilize the knowledge gained to take this effort to the next level.
The funding emphasized the need for comprehensive systems of care to address youth homelessness rather than relying on individual or unconnected projects. Connecticut has been a national leader on this front, the approach to end youth homelessness follows the Campaign’s successful work in ending veterans’ homelessness.
The group’s achievements in recent years include:
- Research and 2013 publication of Invisible No More, the first comprehensive state level report on youth homelessness released at an open forum held at the state capitol
- 2014 Opening Doors for Youth plan, based on a multi-stakeholder process and conclusions from the 2013 report
- 2015 first-ever statewide count of homeless youth
- 2016 implementation of first-phase strategies, including implementing youth-led research
- Upcoming 2017 statewide count of homeless youth
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Youth Homelessness Demonstration will greatly accelerate Connecticut’s ability to meet the goal of preventing and ending homelessness among youth by the end of 2020. The statewide approach, strong team of partners, and years of coordination and collaboration have laid the groundwork for creating a coordinated community response system for runaway and unaccompanied youth.
Connecticut’s work will serve as guidance to improve policy and practice in other communities throughout the country.
Below is a list of the communities that were awarded:
- Anchorage, Alaska (rural): $1.5 million
- San Francisco, California: $2.9 million
- Watsonville, Santa Cruz City and County, California: $2.2 million
- Connecticut: $6.6 Million
- Kentucky (Rural): $1.9 Million
- Grand Traverse, Antrim, Leelanau Counties, Michigan (Rural): $1.3 Million
- Cincinnati/Hamilton County, Ohio: $3.8 Million
- Ohio (Rural): $2.2 Million
- Austin/Travis County, Texas: $5.2 Million
- Seattle/King County, Washington: $5.4 Million
Click here to read HUD’s press release.
Click here to read Governor Malloy and Congressional Delegate press release.