November Consolidated Homeless Grant Newsletter

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Consolidated Homeless Grant (CHG) Newsletter

November 2016

Please forward to your sub grantees and contact your CHG program manager if you have any questions.

Myths and Facts

Myth: For many people with disabilities, employment is not a good option.

Fact: While there are many advantages to be gained through employment, fears about the effect of a paycheck on cash benefits and healthcare prevent people from pursuing their work goals. The fact is, most beneficiaries can increase their financial wellbeing and improve their quality of life through work.

Myth: You can't work while applying for and receiving Social Security benefits.

Fact: Yes, you can! 

Webinar: This Wednesday, Nov. 30 at 3 p.m. (EST), the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) will share empowering and myth-busting information about working while applying for and receiving SSA benefits.

Presenters will provide information on SSA work incentives and resources available to applicants and beneficiaries. We will share our new Yes You Can Work flyer and conversation guide written for providers to use in the field when discussing the benefits of work. You will also hear from a local SOAR provider who will share their experience providing integrated SOAR and employment supports in the community.   

click to register

Reminder: Rent Limit Includes Utilities

The CHG guidelines require that grantees and sub-grantees develop rent limit policies, based on a percentage of Fair Market Rent (FMR). In keeping with HUD practice, FMR includes the published rent amount for a given unit, plus a utility allowance. Utility allowance schedules are available from your local housing authority.

If adding published rent and utility allowances together is making it difficult to find units within your current rent limit, you may revise your rent limit. It is also allowable to have an exceptions policy that describes how exceptions to the rent limit will be made.

Annual Homeless Service Provider Grantee Forum a Success

Annual Homeless Service Provider Grantee Forum a Success!

The fall grantee forum gave us a rich opportunity to connect and learn from one another about the solid work being done in communities to help people who are homeless access housing.  Kathie Barkow drove home the fact that we are equipped to shift our systems, and Bary Hansen from Drexel House in Olympia shared his personal experience in making the change at his own agency. If you didn’t attend and want access to some of the materials, contact your CHG program manager.

Quotes from attendees:

  • “We have to be careful about the language we use. We don’t say ‘Housing First’, we just do it!”
  • “We are doing a lot more outreach now, being personal and engaging people where they are!”
  • “Many people think that they can’t get housing, they think they have burned out all of their options – we help them re-think that idea.”