In an effort to stop homelessness across Sacramento County, several non-profits offer eviction prevention as well as rapid rehousing programs. The programs are mostly funded using federal government HUD grants. Another set of services, ranging from legal aid to mediation services, are also used in an effort to keep low to moderate income families in their home.
Those residents that are considered to be homeless as part of the McKinney–Vento Homeless Assistance Act may be able to qualify for assistance from rehousing. Additional aid may also be arranged for those with an imminent eviction notice.
Sacramento County individuals that are homeless will be considered to be living on the streets, in an unsafe area such as a park or under a bridge, in a motel, or maybe they are living with a relative. Anyone without a permanent home to go to each night can considered to be homeless. These individuals will have various options available to them.
Those individuals that were evicted, or lost their home to foreclosure, and are considered to be homeless per McKinney–Vento will be placed into a shelter or transitional housing unit. At those locations the client will be given a meal, clothing, and case management. There are housing units for women, children, single mothers, veterans, and others. This will help ensure privacy.
Once in the transitional housing unit, the Sacramento County family will be enrolled into a case management process. This will help empower them with the tools, such as income and new job skills, so they can afford the rent on their own. This case management process will help the client avoid a future eviction once they are back to living on their own.
Another part of rehousing will involve financial support. It can be very challenging (if not impossible) for a family living in poverty or that was homeless to come up with the cash to pay to move or for a security deposit. Therefore non-profits in Sacramento California may be able to issue the client a government grant, or a no-interest loan, to pay for the security deposit. This along can often help the family overcome the barrier to being rehoused.
Sacramento County emergency eviction help is available as the result of services provided by both the Continuum of Care as well as United Way. Various resources are used in an effort to help low income families stay housed. Whether it is an apartment, private home, condominium, or other structure, assistance is provided.
Many of these resources are paid for using ESG – Emergency Solution Grants. The federal government HUD agency provided funds to local non-profits in the area. These groups then take that money and use it to help prevent an eviction in the community. Or the agencies also pay for other social services, ranging from legal advice to case management as well as landlord-tenant mediation.
When applying for help, a case manager from an agency in Sacramento County will decide what type of aid, if anything, is available. Most families do request direct financial aid for paying a rental arrears, however this is most limited. Instead the tenant may be referred to legal support from pro-bono attorneys in Sacramento County or they are given other tools. Also, any type of government grant is a hand-up and not a “free hand-out”, so the applicant will need to take a seines of steps to address the crisis as well.
Depending on how much in arrears the tenant is with their rent or energy bills, agencies may help pay a portion of that in an effort to stop the eviction. Or, if after an assessment has been done, if homelessness is imminent then they will try to help the family find a new home in Sacramento California as part of rehousing (see above).
If ESG grants are not an option for paying the arrears, then the other programs explored include LIHEAP for utility bills, payment plans, and even section 8 for long term housing. The application process for many of these may take months though, and they will not offer immediate eviction help to those facing an emergency.
In some instances, a motel or hotel voucher can be issued to the family. This will help give them time save money and in general get back on track with their life. There are local motels that cooperate with HUD to place families into them, however it will usually only be an option if the shelters are full and the motels may only last for a day or two.
There are numerous charities that are part of the Continuum of Care. They employ both full time staff and use volunteers to help the less fortunate. No one agency in Sacramento County may have all the answers that someone needs to stop the eviction, but since it is a network they can refer the client to some other program for their specific needs. For more information on assistance available in the area, dial 1-800-500-4931.
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