NEWS

Housing People Takes Investment, Not Magic

We have said before that the reasons why people experience homelessness are complex, but the solutions are not. Ensuring that people can access stable and safe housing and maintain that housing is the solution to homelessness. 

Preble Street created its Rapid Re-Housing program (RRH) in 2020 to move more people from homelessness to permanent housing. Rapid Re-Housing is an evidence-based and housing first intervention designed to help individuals quickly exit homelessness, return to housing in the community, and not become homeless again in the future.

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...people served in 2023
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...people housed in 2023

Since its start, RRH has worked with people experiencing homelessness in the greater Portland area, including a focus on victims/survivors of domestic violence and/or human trafficking. Thanks to funding through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Continuum of Care (CoC) Program Competition announced earlier this week by Senator Susan Collins, Preble Street will be expanding its Rapid Re-Housing program to the cities of Lewiston and Auburn over the coming months. The aim of this funding is to serve 30 households over a year and connect them to permanent housing, reducing the time those people experience homelessness and limit returns to homelessness. 

“Rapid Re-Housing is evidenced-based, and housing placements are the natural outcome of the model. Invest in the model, and what some people call ‘miracles’ will happen every day,” shares Andrew Bove, Vice President of Social Work. “It's not magic, in fact it’s quite the opposite. We can decide as a community if we want programs like this and if we are willing to invest in them. We are really excited to add Rapid Re-Housing to the services that Preble Street provides in Androscoggin County.”  

RRH has three critical components...

Participants work with a Preble Street caseworker to create an individualized housing plan with the goal of obtaining a connection to permanent housing as quickly as possible. Along with connecting people experiencing homelessness to housing, the RRH program also helps keep individuals and families from becoming homeless in the first place.  

“We believe that each of our clients can be successfully connected to permanent housing - it just looks different for everyone depending on the challenges they might have experienced and the goals that they have identified,” adds Leanne Pomeroy, Director of Rapid Re-Housing. “Using that lens, our very creative and resourceful staff, using their skills, relationships, and knowledge of how systems work, help folks navigate some very complex issues until we can connect them with housing that works for their needs. On any given day, staff might be helping someone apply for a birth certificate or successfully fill out apartment applications for affordable housing or support someone once they’ve moved into what might be their very first apartment.” 

Preble Street case managers build relationship with clients to inform the work but also, just as importantly, build relationships with landlords, and this supports in stability. Preble Street works with clients both before and after they are housed, and for as long as they need to ensure stability.  

LANDLORDS HELP!

Supporting people experiencing homelessness helps individuals and the greater community. If you have available units and want to rent them to people experiencing homelessness, please reach out to us at LandlordsHelp@preblestreet.org. You can also click the link below to learn more!

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