Federal agencies define the homeless as someone having no shelter. The Texas Homeless Network defines homelessness as having an unstable living environment, or sub-standard housing, such as shelter with lack of water or electricity.
No matter the definition, there are more people than ever becoming homeless.
Hood County is experiencing an ongoing issue with homelessness especially among the following:
Children aging out of foster care.
Elderly or individuals on a fixed income.
Mission Granbury, Salvation Army, Cornerstone Assistance of Hood County, Opportunity House and Celebrate Recovery recently came together as “The Hood County Homeless Coalition” to find ways each entity will address this community problem.
The Homeless Outreach Prevention and Elimination (HOPE) Project started in January 2012, after several inquiries from the community about the “homeless children” population (the focus seemed to be with the high school population) in Granbury.
After realizing the community interest and the history Mission Granbury has had with addressing this population, interested parties were invited to further review the problem.
Several meetings were conducted to clarify the specific numbers of the truly (no shelter at all) homeless children. These discussions will continue through the Hood County Homeless Coalition.
Mission Granbury is the only entity that is currently providing shelter for an identified homeless population through the Ada Carey Center. Also, Mission Granbury provides homeless prevention through its Emergency Assistance Network funded by the Salvation Army, Stonewater Church, Hood County Children’s Charity, Lakeside Baptist Church, United Way, Acton United Methodist Church, in addition to 13 other local churches.
Other initiatives include Opportunity House (faith- based initiative), Cornerstone Assistance of Hood County and Habitat for Humanity.
THE NEED IS THERE
One homeless need that is being met in our community is homeless prevention. This includes providing rental, utility and water assistance. Another need is filled through the family violence shelter administered by Mission Granbury with the financial support from 15 local churches.
Community priority homeless populations in Granbury include:
Abused women with children.
Mentally ill or substance abuse history, single men.
Disabled or on a fixed income.
Children aging out of foster care.
Re-entry, single men and women.
Homeless school children.
Types of shelter could include temporary housing such as a family violence shelter or motel meeting the need for several days to weeks.
Transitional housing would include a temporary shelter such as an apartment for 3-6 months.
Permanent housing could be for 6 months or more.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Currently, Washington is funding the majority of housing issues throughout the U.S. There continues to be an exponentially growing problem. We as a community can address this very complicated and convoluted population if we work together to get private funds, churches and local business contributions.
As a civilized country, we should not allow vulnerable people to go without basic necessities. We live in a country that is full of opportunity and all we need to do is to provide a bridge for the vulnerable to cross over.
While some may not choose to follow the path of opportunity, we can still give to those that do.
This program is not intended to create, or further, a dependent population, but a temporary solution to help those in need get back on their feet.
Together we can make a difference.
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