Interfaith Hospitality Network recently won a grant of $321,000 to provide homelessness prevention and housing services to the community.
Called The Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program (HPRP II), this grant is funded by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and administered through the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. Eleven agencies throughout the State of New Jersey were chosen. IHN was the only agency chosen in Essex County.
Thirty percent of the grant enables IHN to help families who are on the brink of homelessness to stay in their homes while seventy percent is to help families in emergency shelter move into new homes as soon as possible.
Preventing homelessness for a family or moving them from emergency shelter to their own home as soon as possible makes good economic sense since it actually costs far less than providing emergency shelter. Add to that the advantages of helping a family maintain stability including fewer health problems, the ability to develop roots in a community, and fewer educational disruptions and it quickly becomes clear that allocating more resources for housing than shelter is best for families.