PHILADELPHIA – The City’s Office of Homeless Services (OHS) has announced the award of $1.3 million dollars from the PA Department of Community and Economic Development to support two Rapid Rehousing programs. Rapid Rehousing addresses homelessness by providing 12-24 months of tenant-based rental assistance accompanied by housing case management. It is 85% effective in preventing a return to homelessness.

“This funding provides more needed affordable housing help for people experiencing homelessness to exit shelter. Statewide competitions are always fierce. Philadelphia can now bolster two excellent Rapid Rehousing programs – one for families and one for older adults,” said Liz Hersh, Director of OHS. “It’s still a difficult time for many of our vulnerable neighbors, especially people of color who have been hit hard by COVID and are overrepresented among those experiencing homelessness. We’re grateful to be able to do more to meet these urgent community needs.”

The new funds will support two programs. The first for $571,290 goes to HELP USA which will focus on supporting families from 25 households. The second for $774,268 is awarded to the Public Health Management Corporation to help 35 older adults. Both Rapid Rehousing programs will help people find units to move into, negotiate with the landlord, and provide a range of services designed to increase their incomes and connect with employment, benefits, and services to provide long-term housing stability.

The PA Department of Community and Economic Development selected the grantees. This is the third round of competitive funding Philadelphia has received from state through CARES Act Emergency Solutions Grants, bringing the total to over $6.5 million dollars to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 on people experiencing homelessness.