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Homeless Services Assistance

The City of Newton is committed to assisting people who are homeless or are at-risk of homelessness and allocates funding from three U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grants to programs that address homelessness Community Development Block Grant, Emergency Solutions Grant, and Continuum of Care.

Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)

Newton allocates a portion of the annual Community Development Block Grant funding it receives from HUD to programs that address homelessness. These programs are funded through the 15 percent of the City's CDBG grant that is allocated to human service programs. For FY15, five programs are planned to be funded at approximately the following levels:

Programs Funded CDBG Funds Awarded Target Population
Horace Cousens Industrial Fund $11,877 People at-risk of homelessness
REACH - Hotline Assistance and Support Groups $3,472 Survivors of domestic violence
Newton Community Service Centers - Parents Program $19,618 People at-risk of homelessness
Riverside Community Care - Outreach and Crisis Stabilization $3,882 Adolescents at-risk of homelessness
Riverside Community Care - Substance Abuse Treatment $16,038 People at-risk of homelessness

Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG)

The Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) is intended to provide a continuum of assistance to prevent homelessness and to enable homeless individuals and families to be rapidly re-housed and move toward independent living.  ESG funds are awarded to nonprofit agencies through an open grant application process. Annually, Newton Housing and Community Development Division staff issue a notice of availability of ESG funds for the fiscal year. Grant applications for homeless shelters, transitional housing programs, street outreach activities, homeless prevention and rapid re-housing programs are reviewed by Division staff and the Human Service Advisory Committee (HSAC), a citizen advisory group. The Human Service Advisory Committee makes an allocation recommendation to the Planning and Development Board, which then makes a recommendation to the Mayor, who makes the decision regarding the distribution of funds to applicants. Grants are awarded to the agencies that demonstrate an outstanding capacity to meet documented needs. 

For FY15, the City of Newton has received a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to fund homeless services within the Brookline-Newton-Waltham-Watertown (BNWW) Continuum of Care.  Funds are available for providers of emergency shelter services, street outreach activities, homeless prevention and rapid re-housing services in the BNWW communities.  The City is accepting applications for service during the period from 7/1/2014 to 6/30/2015, making a total of  approximately $132,462 available with the following maximum amounts for each activity: 

 Activity   

   Maximum Amount Available 

 Shelter Services

  $63,674

 Street Outreach Activities

 $10,000

 Rapid Re-housing Services

 $14,644

 Homeless Prevention Services   

 $44,144

Resources
The following links can provide helpful information for FY15 Emergency Solutions Grant applications:
FY15 ESG RFP Questions and Answers
BNWW Continuum of Care Emergency Solutions Grant Activities, Performance Standards, and Consultation Process
Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness
2014 HMIS Data Standards Manual
HUD's ESG Program Information

Continuum of Care

The City of Newton is part of the Brookline-Newton-Waltham-Watertown Continuum of Care, one of 19 Continuums in Massachusetts formed as a result of HUDs annual competitive application process for Continuum of Care funds. These Continuums are made up of the geographic area of one or more contiguous cities and/or towns. The purpose of forming these continuums is to bring communities together in a coordinated planning effort to work towards alleviating homelessness.

Within the Brookline-Newton-Waltham-Watertown Continuum of Care geographic area, the entity that meets regularly to carryout this goal is the Homelessness Consortium. The Homelessness Consortium, which was formed in the mid-1990s, is composed of representatives of nonprofit organizations, municipal government, state agencies, businesses and religious organizations, as well as homeless and formerly homeless people. As the lead entity of the Consortium, City of Newton Housing and Community Development staff coordinates the annual application for HUD Continuum of Care funds. These funds are awarded annually through an extensive and highly competitive application process. Agencies that receive funds contract directly with HUD.

For more information regarding the City of Newton's homeless assistance programs, please contact Judith Menon at (617) 796-1125 or via email at jmenon@newtonma.gov or Lydia Scott at (617) 796-1132 or via email at lscott@newtonma.gov.