New Opportunities Updates Partnership on Progress of Homelessness Prevention Program
On January 6, 2011 Director of Research Bill Rybczyk of New Opportunities, Inc. provided the Danbury Housing Partnership with an annual update on services provided in the Danbury region under the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP).
During the first year of operation a total of $82,687 in financial assistance payments were made to help clients in the Danbury region. A total of 606 customers were assisted, including 308 children. A little over 50% of the children in households served were between the ages of 0 and 6 years of age. This data supports the Partnership's finding that families with children are a primary need group in the greater Danbury area. New Opportunities also found that utilization of Security Deposit assistance increased dramatically following the closing of the Security Deposit Program run by the Connecticut Department of Social Services. New Opportunities provided a total of $38,648 in security deposit assistance during the past year enabling Danbury area families facing homelessness to obtain permanent rental housing.
The HPRP program consists of two components: homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing. Homeless Prevention funds are allocated to assist those at risk of homelessness with a lack of financial resources and support networks to obtain immediate housing or remain in existing housing. Rapid Re-Housing funds provide assistance to those recently homeless living in shelters, on the street or in places not meant for public habitation. Financial assistance is provided in the form of rental assistance, security deposits, utility assistance, moving costs and hotel/motel vouchers.
Funds are distributed in the Greater Danbury region through two local agencies that have entered into partnerships with New Opportunities, Inc. The two local agencies are the Association of Religious Communities (ARC), which is the lead agency of the Dream Homes Community Center collaborative; and the Community Action Committee of Danbury (CACD), which is the lead agency for anti-poverty efforts in Danbury. The efforts of ARC are directed by Executive Director Reverend P.J. Leopold while CACD efforts are supervised by Executive Director Bobby Poole.
Danbury Housing Partnership Chair Mark J. Nolan saluted the work of New Opportunities, Inc. in implementing this program, stating: “The Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program has had a successful first year of operation. The program has provided essential assistance to families with children in the Danbury area to both prevent families from becoming homeless as well as to quickly re-hous those who do become homeless. We are grateful to New Opportunities Inc for their efforts as well as to ARC and CACD for stepping forward to provide these badly needed services in our community.”
Click here to view a copy of the HPRP Progress Report from New Opportunities.
For more information on New Opportunities, Inc. please visit www.newopportunitiesinc.org.
For more information on the Danbury Housing Partnership please visit www.danburyhousingpartnership.org.
For more information on Dream Homes Community Center and the Association of Religious Communities please call 203-792-9450 or click on the link provided.
For more information on the Community Action Committee of Danbury please call 203-744-4700.