Homelessness and Community Programs

In 2011, “Life” happened to myself and my family. Unfortunately, like many Americans, we experienced homelessness. We received assistance through “Community Connections” as a military family. We were placed into temporary housing, in the middle of a warzone. My husband, a retired War veteran, suffers from PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder). My husband is triggered by gun shots and other loud unexpected noises, so it was a very emotional time for us.

When housing programs assist needy families, the family dynamics should be taken into consideration (i.e. family size/structure). Properly evaluate each family before placement to ensure everyone affected has adequate support around them to make them successful in finding permanent homes, education, and employment. Also— Create safe havens and don’t relocate vulnerable families to a unsafe environment, making matters worst! Overall— Ensuring a safe environment is paramount!! Someone shouldn’t fear for their lives when they are trying to receive much needed help. It’s everyone’s human right to have access to a safe clean environment with adequate amounts of healthy food, clean water, and protection. Just because they are homeless, it doesn’t make them less of a human.

Constantly check on the families— not only when it’s time to re-certify so the organizations can be approved for government grants!! Funds allocated towards the homeless population should only be used for that purpose, and should be closely monitored. In addition, I would like to add that the Dept. Of Housing/Section 8 programs are for families who need the assistance to sustain and keep their families together. Help families create a life skills plan of action so they can positively advance from these programs into permanent private homes. Another needy family waiting for assistance would also appreciate the program as well!! There are a plethora of home buying program in every state, including Washington, DC!! Prepare families to own real estate.

Make certain that the housing programs are ADA compliant based off of need. People who have physical or mental handicaps and Senior Citizens should have preference, and be placed into a home that is easily accessible, safe, and peaceful.

In addition, affordable housing and job readiness programs are essential for the homeless population to become successful. I’ve opened up my home to many people over the years to pass on the blessing recieved to me; assisting as much as I could. A lot of the people who I’ve helped were men.

There are many programs for women and children, but there are very little programs to help men. The biggest issue some men face is with returning back to society from incarceration. There should be a positive transition between incarceration and freedom. Help with the expungement processes for crimes for which time has been served, and when the person has shown improvement. Receive mandatory mental health services, and life coaching to aide in a fresh start into society. Also ensure that Parole officers are doing their jobs. Ensure that the person they are overseeing is receiving adequate assistance to transfer back into society.

Click on this link to learn more: National Expungement Week

Written on August 23, 2020