July 19, 2013
For additional information contact:Jim Huntley Director of Advancement Berkeley Food and Housing Project 2362 Bancroft Way Berkeley, California 94704 jhuntley @ bfhp.org Phone: 510-809-8584
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Berkeley Food and Housing Project Receives Two Prestigious Awards in One Week:
$1,007,000 from U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Recognition from Alameda County EveryOne Home for “Most Improved Program” for agency’s Women’s Emergency Shelter.
(Berkeley, CA): Berkeley Food and Housing Project (BFHP) announced today the receipt of a $1,007,000 grant to expand its services to homeless veterans in a three-county region of the East Bay. The award from the SSVF (Support Services for Veterans Families), a program of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, is entitled ROADS (Regional Outreach, Advocacy and Support) Home and is a collaboration between the Berkeley Food and Housing Project and Anka Behavioral Health, Inc. (ABHI), a multi-state non-profit corporation with a mission to eliminate the impact of behavioral health problems for all people. Through this collaboration, BFHP and ABHI will provide homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing services to 200 homeless and imminently homeless veteran households in Alameda, Contra Costa, and Solano Counties.
Said BFHP Executive Director Terrie Light, “We are honored to deepen our partnership with the VA to work with our non-profit and VA colleagues across the country to end veteran homelessness by 2015. We are energized by the prospect of housing chronically homeless veterans across three counties and restoring them to a life of dignity. An award of this magnitude represents a milestone in the 43-year history of the agency.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee (California 13th Congressional District) said, “I am very pleased that the Berkeley Food and Housing Project has been selected for this critical VA funding. As our economy continues to recover, we need to ensure that our veterans have jobs, adequate housing, and the support services they need to transition successfully to civilian life. This grant takes us one step closer to fulfilling our obligation to our local heroes.”
Congressman George Miller (California 11th Congressional District) who endorsed the project, said, “I am pleased to see significant federal funds dedicated to providing quality services to homeless and imminently homeless veterans and their families in our community. This is wonderful for the veteran community in the East Bay, and I look forward to building on our region’s robust efforts to address homelessness, mental illness, substance abuse, unemployment, and other disabilities among veterans and their families.”
The project was also endorsed by Congressman John Garamendi (California 3rd Congressional District).
In other news, Berkeley Food and Housing Project also received an award from EveryOne Home (Ending Homelessness in Alameda County) for the “Most Improved Program” for its North County Women’s Center and Emergency Shelter, where the agency was able, in one year, to increase its exit rate to permanent housing by 63% and decrease the length of stay by 19%. The award carried with it a special prize of $5,000, made possible by the Y & H Soda Foundation.
Said Sharon Alford, Manager of the BFHP North County Women’s Center, “We are so proud to be recognized for our hard work and dedication to the plight of homeless women and children. These improved results demonstrate that persistence, combined with an intimate knowledge of the needs of our clients, and along with the creation of partnerships that lead to sustainable housing, are the keys to success.”
The Women’s Center provides short-term residential housing, meals, clothing, laundry and shower facilities to 28 women and accompanying children nightly. Clients receive individualized housing case management, health and wellness interventions, benefits advocacy, and access to employment counseling and life skills training.
About the Berkeley Food and Housing Project: Berkeley Food & Housing Project (BFHP) is a non-profit organization committed to empowering homeless and struggling members of our community to transform their lives. Founded in 1970, the agency provides an extensive range of practical, quality housing, food and social support services , and inspires those in need to achieve real and long-lasting results. Every year, BFHP provides more than 28,000 nights of emergency shelter and serves more than 100,000 free meals. Over the past three years, the agency has transitioned more than 1,000 individuals and families into permanent housing.