February 29, 2024

HUD: Nearly $9 Million Announced to Support People Experiencing Homelessness in Florida through Disaster Recovery Program

Grants will be awarded to the state and six localities to support those living in an emergency shelter, transitional housing, or a place not meant for human habitation.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded $8.7 million in Rapid Unsheltered Survivor Housing (RUSH) funding to the State of Florida and six localities impacted by Hurricane Ian to support people experiencing homelessness – those living in an emergency shelter, transitional housing, or a place not meant for human habitation. Additionally, it will address the needs of individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and have needs not otherwise served or fully met by existing Federal disaster relief.

“Natural disasters can be devastating to communities and families. These much-needed resources allow us to reach our most vulnerable neighbors in a time of crisis,” said HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. “HUD is committed to working with local officials and communities to rapidly rehouse individuals and families in the wake of an emergency. None of our neighbors should have to worry about whether or not they will have a safe place to sleep when disaster strikes.”

This is the second allocation of RUSH funding awarded to help communities in Florida recover in the wake of the devastating storms. The first round of funding, awarded in October 2022, consisted of $6.8 million to the State of Florida and seven of the state’s localities impacted by Hurricane Ian.

“Before the storms, some areas of Florida already had a housing crisis,” said Marion McFadden, HUD’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Community Planning and Development. “HUD is committed to investing in Florida’s recovery and monitoring the impact of these disasters on local housing needs. This funding allows us to work with our local partners to fill in the gap to make sure that Florida has the resources it needs to support people experiencing homelessness and prevent people at risk of homelessness from falling into it.”

While FEMA, the Red Cross, and local community members have provided assistance to survivors, the severity of the damage and displacement endured by communities in Florida from the storms underscores the need for additional support.

The following list enumerates the localities that are receiving the funding:

ESG NameSecond Allocation
Collier County$1,150,486
State of Florida$3,839,805
Lee County$1,849,306
Polk County$207,100
Seminole County$125,578
Volusia County$1,206,144

The eligible activities for this funding include:

  1. For people currently experiencing homelessness: emergency shelter; rapid re-housing, which provides up to 24 months of rental assistance, financial assistance for move in costs, and supportive services; and
  2. For people who are at-risk of experiencing homelessness: homelessness prevention, which provides up to 24 months of rental assistance, utility assistance, and supportive services for people at risk of homelessness; and outreach assistance, including assistance to meet urgent needs.

RUSH funding is available to help communities provide outreach, emergency shelter, rapid re-housing, and other assistance to people experiencing or at risk of homelessness who are in a disaster-affected area but cannot access all services provided by FEMA programs. HUD is providing these allocations due to a high level of displacement following the disaster.

This post was originally published here.