ALBANY - The State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance recently announced that it has awarded $15.7 million to help prevent homelessness and help those in crisis find stable housing across New York State.
A total of 67 organizations have been selected to receive funding through OTDA's Solutions to End Homelessness Program. Five groups in Western New York will receive a total of $924,934. Two of the five funding awards are for the renewal of existing projects.
"STEHP is designed to reduce homelessness by providing prevention services to avoid shelter placements and rapid re-housing services for those who have already sought shelter," OTDA Executive Deputy Commissioner Elizabeth Berlin said. "This program, combined with our efforts to provide supportive housing to those who are already homeless, reflects OTDA's strong commitment to a comprehensive approach to reducing homelessness in New York State. OTDA's collaboration with federal and local partners, including local Continuum of Care homeless coordinating bodies, further strengthens our response."
The goal of STEHP is to help individuals and families remain in or obtain permanent housing, assist them with supportive services during their experience of homelessness or the eviction process and assist in achieving housing stabilization. The range of activities funded under the STEHP awards includes: maintaining and improving the quality of emergency and transitional shelters and drop-in centers for homeless individuals and families; assisting in meeting the costs of operating such programs; providing comprehensive supportive services aimed at housing stabilization; providing rapid re-housing services such as obtaining a permanent living situation; and providing eviction prevention assistance to individuals and families.
As part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's focus on streamlining State government in order to achieve measurable outcomes, beginning with the 2011-12 fiscal year enacted budget, four existing homelessness prevention programs - the Homelessness Intervention Program, the Supplemental Homelessness Intervention Program, the Homelessness Prevention Program, and the Emergency Solutions Grant Program - were combined into one homelessness prevention and crisis intervention program, STEHP.
The following organizations have received funding in Western New York:
ACCORD, Corp., Allegany County, $220,677
Cattaraugus Community Action, Cattaraugus County, $271,058
Saving Grace Ministries, Erie County, $114,621
Chautauqua Opportunities, Chautauqua County, $283,578
The YWCA of Niagara, Niagara County, $35,000