Low income renters in Marion County that are facing an eviction due to a short term emergency can seek assistance from several agencies that focus on homeless prevention. Many are part of the Indianapolis Continuum of Care (CoC) network. Not only will the organizations try to stop an eviction, but there are also non-profits that offer a service known as rapid rehousing which can move the family into a new home or apartment.
The agencies that offer this form of assistance are usually part of the Continuum of Care, which is a group of non-profits that strive to ensure affordable housing is available in Marion County Indiana. They also partner together to stop homelessness, whether it is from an eviction or foreclosure. Some of the other non-profits that can be contacted for support are part of the United Ways network of service providers or state agencies, such as the Indiana Coalition for the Homeless and Housing Initiatives (ICHHI) or Department of Children and Family Services.
The purpose of the program is to provide homelessness prevention assistance. This is for those on the streets as now as well as tenants who would otherwise become homeless if they do not keep up with their rent. Applicants need to generally have an income at or below 30% of average median income in Marion County, but they do need to have some form of income.
The eviction help will be focused on families or individuals who will imminently lose their primary nighttime within 14 days of applying for help and have no other home to live in. Since cash grants are rare, the non-profits will give priority to stop an eviction for tenants with children, domestic violence survivor, senior citizens, and people with a short term crisis.
This assistance can come in many forms, including money from government ESG grants to pay for rent arrears or legal aid, which often involves a mediation process. Other ways to stop an eviction may be the use of a payment plan, moving into a new, more affordable apartment that the landlord may own, or dispute resolution.
For those Indianapolis area residents that can't be assisted due to extreme circumstances, or that are now homeless, then rapid-rehousing is used. Anyone that falls into this category needs to meet the definitions put into place by HUD. When qualified, the process will provide the family with vouchers for motels, placement into shelter, and eventual access to permanent-supportive housing in Marion County.
This can mean they are living on the streets, in a place not fit for human habitation, in a shelter, or a family members home. They they need to meet the formal definition of being with a home to live in. Those categories are further defined by HEARTH and are as follows.
-A Marion County resident who lacks regular, fixed housing to live in. Maybe they are in a shelter or institution.
-People can be homeless per government guidelines on benefits such as Food and Nutrition Act, Head Start, or Violence against Women Act. These individuals may qualify for rehousing.
-If a women or child is homeless or was evicted as they were fleeing an unsafe environment, then this may qualify them as well.
All assistance is always combined with ongoing case management services. This will allow them to reach stability. A non-profit that is part of the Continuum of Care will either directly offer advice, or refer a client to, everything from credit counseling to job placement and more. The purpose is to rebuild their financial situation so the family can afford their rent on their own in the near future, thereby preventing future evictions.
The Indianapolis Continuum of Care Network arranges much of this emergency eviction assistance. The organization is a network of various non-profit and charity agencies, churches, and other groups, including government organizations such as the IHCDA-Indiana Housing and Community Develop Association. The staff will advocate on behalf of the homeless, people with an eviction notice as well as special needs populations in Marion County.
The CoC Network will often be allocated federal government HUD funding, such as emergency solution grants. Or the agencies have access to motel vouchers, transitional housing, or other sources of money to help tenants with rent or deposit costs. They combine together as part of CoC to maximize resources available.
For more information as well as referrals to CoC of Marion County and other housing focused agencies, call (317) 926-4357.
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