Housing, rent, and deposit help from Big Bend Homeless Coalition.

The Big Bend Homeless Coalition is focused on preventing evictions and rehousing individuals in the area. Everything from shelter to subsidies for paying rent are available from the non-profit agency. They may also have federal government funding from the ESG program, and that money may be used for a number of expenses as well.

Services are available across the counties of Franklin, Gadsden, Wakulla, Leon, Liberty, Madison, Taylor, and Jefferson. While the funds are very limited, they may be able to offer referrals as well to other organizations or churches in the region. This is done as part of the Continuum of Care. The coalition will try to focus its services on the homeless or those looking to be rehoused. There is also assistance for people with special circumstances, such as veterans, single moms or the disabled.

Many of the referrals are for financial assistance to help pay rent. As there are various regional charities, government agencies, and non-profits that offer support. While the funds are limited, the Big Bend Homeless Coalition can direct a client to a program. For those that need it, they too can find agencies that help with rent payments.

AVH, or the Advocates for Veteran Housing Supportive Services, will try to end any homelessness of veterans or their families in the region. Hundreds of households in the Big Bend area, including counties of Franklin, Wakulla, and Leon may qualify. There is both rehousing available as well as homeless prevention services administered.

A Housing Specialist, Case Managers, and Outreach Workers from Big Bend Homeless Coalition will partner with veterans to help them find a solution. It can range from offering them funds to pay the security deposit on a new apartment to short term loans for rental expenses. The goal is to help the person overcome barriers to obtaining and retaining housing.

Additional housing assistance for Veterans includes permanent placement. The main center is at 1602 Stuckey Avenue and is known as Home Front. The tenant will need to pay minimal rent, but can obtain other self-sufficiency support during their stay. They also work with the local VA on helping clients access benefits.





Another resource is transitional housing, which is also available from HOPE Community. This facility is for homeless single adults, single parents, and families with children too. As part of the transitional housing, the guests will receive free food, meals, and of course shelter. Case management is available throughout this process as well, and it will help people get placed into stable housing as well.

As part of the stabilization process, the client will look for employment in the region and get help in repairing credit or building savings. Most of the support is for people that have been have a history of long term homelessness or have a disability. Over the years, hundreds of families have been placed in the Big Bend Florida area.

A Permanent Housing Program is located at Balkin Road. It is low cost, safe housing for clients, mostly the disabled. The resource is known as Home Place, and it operates as an affordable housing solution.

Rapid Re-housing is for the short or long term homelessness in counties such as Franklin, Taylor, or Leon. Specialists from the Big Bend Homeless Coalition can refer clients to financial aid for paying rent, offer case management services and other aid, all of which is focused on helping households move back into stability and out of homelessness as quickly as possible. Dozens of people may receive funds, often from Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) to pay their utility deposits or rent each year.

The Coalition is also a key partner in the Local Continuum of Care. This means they are responsible for working with other charities or non-profits in the area to create solutions to end evictions and/or foreclosures. The oversee the Tallahassee area’s Homelessness Management Information System, can refer individuals to short and long term housing resources, and provide much more.

For more information, the Big Bend Coalition can be called at (850) 576-5566. The main address is 2729 W. Pensacola Street, Tallahassee, Florida 32304.



By Jon McNamara

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