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Berks Coalition to End Homelessness awarded federal grant

The Berks Coalition to End Homelessness has received a nearly $1 million federal grant to help support a collaboration with the coalitions to end homelessness in Lancaster and York counties.

The three coalitions have been awarded a $990,057 Youth Homelessness Systems Improvement grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. It is part of $51.1 million awarded to 38 communities in 26 states.

The money will help to strengthen each of the three counties’ response to youth homelessness, including by allowing for the creation of system mapping and racial and gender equity surveys to identify gaps and barriers.

“Our current youth homelessness response system is limited, and we know there are many young people in need who aren’t being served,” Berks coalition Assistant Director Elise McCauley said. “This grant will allow us to finally understand the true scope of the problem by gathering much needed data. With that information, we can develop actionable plans to bridge the gaps and create a truly effective response system for our most vulnerable youth.”

The Berks coalition will serve as the administrator for the grant, while the Lancaster group will oversee youth initiatives and collaboration, including the hiring of a youth program coordinator for the three-county region.

The coalition plans to get young people involved in the process, using their lived experiences to guide programs and services.

“This grant is vital because it involves youth in the development of programs and services tailored to their unique needs and compensates them for their valuable contributions,” said Marjorie Shaffer, homeless housing coordinator for the Lancaster coalition. “Their insights will shape solutions that bring about positive change for our vulnerable community members.”


Source: Berkshire mont

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