$1.5 million for homeless to the Springs



The Obama administration announced a $1.4 billion program today to help the homeless, with $1.6 million headed for Colorado Springs. It's part of the state's $17.5 million allotment.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is renewing grant funding needed to keep thousands of local homeless assistance programs operating. HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan said the money will help an unprecedented 6,445 programs continue offering critically needed housing and services to homeless people.

For the first time ever, HUD is quickly providing renewal grants to local programs to prevent any interruption in federal assistance, and will announce funding to new projects in early 2010. The biggest single amount in Colorado Springs, $379,000, will go to the county Department of Human Services, with other sums going to Partners in Housing, Inc., the Salvation Army and Pikes Peak United Way. (For a complete list, click here.)

"As we move into the coldest time of the year, it's critical that no program risk running out of money to keep their doors open," Donovan said in a press release. "These grants will make certain that those programs on the front lines of helping the homeless have the resources they need to house and serve persons who might otherwise be forced to turn to the streets."

The grants are being awarded through HUD's Continuum of Care division, which provide permanent and transitional housing to homeless persons. In addition, Continuum grants fund services such as job training, health care, mental health counseling, substance abuse treatment and child care.

Earlier this year, HUD allocated an additional $1.5 billion through its new Homeless Prevention and Rapid Re-housing Program made possible through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

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