Participants learn details of the new legislation related to homelessness
On Thursday, July 11, 2013, homelessness providers from several Florida counties, including Lee, Collier, Charlotte and Miami-Dade, had a full day of workshops sharing best practices and the challenges they face to serve some of the most vulnerable populations in their communities.
Sponsored by HUD and coordinated with the Lee County Homeless Coalition, the event held at Florida Gulf Coast University attracted almost 100 attendees. Among the topics discussed were homelessness among veterans in southwest Florida, how fair housing impacts homelessness, reasonable accommodations, new legislation and program regulations and support services for the homeless.
Armando Fana, HUD Miami Field Office Director also presented a ceremonial check in the amount of $321,9960 awarded to the Ft Myers Housing Authority in May to serve 35 homeless veterans from the Ft. Myers area and 20 veterans from the Port Charlotte area. This supportive housing assistance is provided through the HUD-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing (HUD-VASH) Program which combines rental assistance from HUD with case management and clinical services provided by VA.
Armando Fana, HUD Miami Field Office Director and Marcus Goodson, Executive Director of Ft. Myers Housing Authority
Janet Bartos, Executive Director of the Lee County Homeless Coalition opened the event discussing the state of homelessness in Lee County and reminding the audience of the ongoing campaign to house 50 homeless veterans within 100 days. In partnership with the Lee County Department of Human Services, The Housing Authority of the City of Fort Myers, Veterans Affairs, American Red Cross and the American Legion Post 38, the partner agencies are taking a proactive approach to housing chronically homeless veterans - those who suffer from serious medical conditions, cost public systems the most money, and have typically been on the streets the longest.