Allegheny County Bureau of Homeless Services housing programs.

Several different non-profit agencies work with the Bureau of Homeless Services to prevent and reverse homelessness in Allegheny County. They offer a number of potential solutions to tenants and anyone that is currently homeless in the county or the city of Pittsburgh. Another key government entity that participates is the Office of Community Services.

When seeking any type of financial assistance or housing, the non-profits or charities indicated below are the main point of contacts. The Bureau themselves do not provide funds, they just try to coordinate programs across the county.

Many of the agencies may have emergency funds for paying a housing expense. Or they may operate facilities such as shelters or transitional housing programs. Regardless of that they do, the focus is on eviction and homeless prevention. The Bureau of Homeless Services and these different partners know it is much less expensive to society, and better for the person, to keep them housed in the first place. So they work towards that objective.

However, for a family or person that is homeless, some of the options for them include the following. Across Allegheny County there are emergency shelters for short term stays. Clients can also use transitional housing type programs for more mid term support. Or there will be cold weather shelters during the winter months. Throughout this process, the guest will be able to receive meals, case management, information on job training and other support.

The end goal is always to place someone into long term, permanent housing. As part of this, there may be government grants to pay a security deposit or first months rent. Some of the agencies in Pittsburgh may issue the client a loan for their housing expenses. So financial support is always an option too.

No matter the situation, the supportive services offered by the agencies, along with case management, can help those people faced with eviction. The services will cover a variety of issues, ranging from lack of employment to rebuilding credit and more.

Some of the specific housing resources include shelter, information and referral, case management, advocacy and assistance with applying for funds to pay for rental expenses. The specific services include the following.




  • Short term, emergency shelters are available in the county. They can provide an immediate place to stay, and clients should dial 412-350-3837. There are locations for victims of domestic violence, youth, the homeless on the streets during winter, families, and the poor.
  • Eviction prevention and immediate rental assistance is offered. Dial 412-350-3837. In almost all cases, the applicant needs to have a pay or quit notice from their landlord.

Other options available in the Allegheny County area are noted below. Once again, while the Bureau of Homeless Services coordinates and helps the non-profits, they do not offer direct aid themselves.

  • The Bridge, or Transitional housing, is good for up to 2 years. It provides people a place to stay while they work towards independence and stability. The person staying their will need to pay some minimal rent, and this will be based on factors such as their total income. Another option is the PennFree Bridge housing, which is for those addicted to drugs or alcohol.
  • As noted, there may be some long term, permanent housing or low income apartments available. There can be lodging for people with a disability or the elderly, among others. While the first step may be shelter and self-sufficiency, the permanent accommodations may be a solution too.

For more information on these and other programs, call 412-350-3837.




By Jon McNamara

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