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PHB has awarded $750,000 for three proposals addressing housing access for those experiencing homelessness
In September, the Portland Housing Bureau (PHB) made $750,000 available for proposals aimed at permanently housing people experiencing homelessness and housing instability in our community. By the October 24 deadline, PHB had received proposals totaling more than $2,500,000.
City staff and external evaluators scored the proposals on a variety factors including cost effectiveness and services to priority populations identified in the A Home for Everyone community-wide plan to end homelessness. These include families with children, unaccompanied youth, adults with disabilities, women, and veterans.
• Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA) submitted a successful proposal on behalf of the Homeless Family System of Care (HFSC). Per NAYA’s request, $355,000 will be managed by Multnomah County to supplement the amount of rent assistance available for families experiencing homelessness. Partners include NAYA, Self Enhancement Inc., JOIN, Portland Homeless Family Solutions, Catholic Charities’ El Programa Hispano, 211info, and Human Solutions. Some of the funding will support families exiting domestic violence situations.
• JOIN has been awarded $285,000 to expand a successful partnership with Cascadia Behavioral Healthcare and the Portland Police Bureau to serve people experiencing homelessness who have frequent police contact. These funds will allow the continuation of housing placement for people who face multiple barriers to finding their own home.
• Catholic Charities’ Housing Transitions Program was awarded $110,000 in partnership with Rose Haven, Easter Seals, and Salvation Army Female Emergency Shelter. Together, they will help women who are experiencing homelessness move from the streets or shelter back into housing.
"This combination of services and partnerships ensures that the majority of the vulnerable populations identified in our community plan to end homelessness, A Home for Everyone, will be served through both new ongoing dollars," say Portland Housing Bureau Director Traci Manning. "With established partnerships already in place, as well as capacity and experience, these organizations are ready to start housing placements immediately."
“In Their Steps” is an experiential journey that invites you walk in one family’s steps on the streets of downtown Portland, experience their daily routines and struggles, and then join the discussion about creative solutions to homelessness.
In the November "Director's Message," Traci Manning looks back at the City's progress toward early housing goals in two Urban Renewal Areas -- and ahead to ways to increase housing opportunity in today's market.
"Twenty years ago, City officials outlined a vision to transform miles of vacant land into a vibrant commercial and residential district where Portlanders of all income levels could find a place to live and share in the opportunities it would bring. The River District Housing Implementation Strategy Update that followed in 1999 targeted 5,000 new housing units by 2020 of which at least 1,750 (or 35%) would be affordable. The City has invested in 2,279 new affordable units through 2014. However, the total number of housing units built in the River District Plan area far exceeded that original target of 5,000 units and the volume of affordable housing production has not matched the pace of market development, despite the aspirations and hard work of the many people that fought to make it happen.
Still, holding a vision of a community built for everyone pushed us as a City toward new thinking about sustainable resources for affordable housing...."
Click here to read the full message.
The position will guide housing policy and Bureau investments with a focus on race equity
PHB is thrilled to welcome Matthew Tschabold as the Bureau's new Equity & Policy Manager.
"Cities may be the best, last place for common ground," Matthew says. "As I join the Portland Housing Bureau, I am excited to be a part of the larger conversation of who we want to be as a community and how we get there. Housing security is a fundamental human right, and a platform from which we can transform our lives. I am looking forward to the challenge and opportunity of making sure that, as Portland continues to grow, there aren't those who continue to be left behind."
Matthew joins PHB most recently from the Oregon Department of Education, where he worked on the development of data-driven community investment strategies based on equity and indicators of need. His background in urban policy, public finance, and governance includes work with the State of Oregon, governments and institutions of Cambodia and Macedonia, the City of New York, and the United States Peace Corps.
In this role, Matthew will lead the development of policies to aid PHB in removing systemic barriers to housing opportunity, starting with issues of race, and ensure equitable outcomes from Bureau investments. The position reflects PHB's ongoing commitment to social justice in the delivery of housing to all residents of Portland’s diverse communities.
Below-freezing temperatures will continue through the weekend
The early arrival of cold weather this year has strained many local organizations to be able to provide enough life-saving winter gear for those experiencing homelessness. With below-freezing temperatures predicted to continue throughout the weekend, providers serving the homeless community are in need of donations ranging from coats, socks, and hats, to tarps and toiletries.
The Portland Housing Bureau (PHB) and community partners are asking the public to visit 211info.org for information on current needs and where to make donations.
In response to severe weather conditions, PHB activated protocols on Tuesday to add shelter capacity in addition to existing year-round facilities and recently opened winter shelter. Since then, roughly 400 people per night have sought emergency shelter, receiving blankets and other gear they will need to survive the cold as well.
Service organizations will need the continued support of the community to be able to sustain these efforts through the winter.
211info coordinates resources and emergency shelter transportation through a grant from PHB. PHB is asking the public to visit www.211info.org/winterdonations for a complete list of what items are needed and locations where donations can be dropped off.