We are making great strides in reducing the homeless population Downtown, and much of that credit goes to our social services agencies who are working together to produce some incredible results. Here is just a sample of the great work happening today:
- Administered by Ability Housing and a collaboration of many organizations, 100 Homes Jacksonville – part of the national 100,000 Homes Campaign – identifies the most vulnerable homeless individuals with a high risk of death (typically those who’ve been on the streets the longest) and works to provide permanent supportive housing. The organization has housed more than 500 chronically homeless people across the region since the program’s inception in 2012 with the ongoing goal to house 30 individuals per month.
- Homeward Bound, a partnership between the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) and Sulzbacher Center, identifies homeless individuals who have been on the street less than six months and helps them locate family or friends in other cities who are willing to provide shelter and assistance. It has provided stable housing to 71 individuals in just six months.
Statistics show when we get people into affordable housing with the needed wrap-around services, there is a 95 percent success rate.
For more astounding facts and figures, read our recent editorial “Guest column: Teamwork is key to reducing homelessness” in partnership with Shannon Nazworth, executive director, Ability Housing of Northeast Florida; Cindy Funkhouser, CEO, Sulzbacher Center; and Dawn Gilman, executive director, Emergency Services & Homeless Coalition.
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