Permanent Supportive Housing To Receive Grant

Tuesday, 27 Dec 2011, 1:21:00 AM

Parimal M. Rohit

Step Up on Second has received a grant to help find housing for homeless people with mental illness.
Courtesy Photo
Step Up on Second has received a grant to help find housing for homeless people with mental illness.

Those struggling to find a proper place to stay in Santa Monica may soon have a place to help them feel welcome, as a local non-profit is in-line to receive a $234,000 grant to facilitate the arrival of permanent supportive housing.

Council members approved the negotiation and execution of a two-year contract with Santa Monica-based nonprofit Step Up on Second (SUoS), with the awarded grant to be equally distributed to the agency for both this and next fiscal year.

The planned project, if developed, would be a “special needs” housing catered toward achieving City Hall’s goals for affordable housing development.

With the grant, SUoS would be given the green light to “facilitate development of permanent supportive housing in Santa Monica … for chronically homeless persons living with mental illness.”

“The purpose of the grant is to enhance the development capacity of locally-based non-profit housing developers to increase the supply of permanent supportive housing,” a staff report stated. “This affordable housing is targeted to persons on the Santa Monica Service registry, a database of chronically homeless persons with high vulnerability based on their age, length of time on the streets and physical/mental health issues.”

The city’s Service Registry would identify beneficiaries of the special needs housing development.

SUoS was the only applicant for the grant, but City Hall expressed confidence in the non-profit’s “demonstrated track record in developing, owning and operating special needs housing for homeless persons living with mental illness.”

In addition to the supportive housing grant, SUoS has received, through the Human Services Grant Program, an additional $247,000-plus in social service funding from the City of Santa Monica for the current fiscal year.

“This funding, combined with County and private funding, subsidizes the operation of supportive programs to stabilize participants including medical, case management, psychiatric care, vocational training, and meal assistance,” the staff report noted. “Experience has shown that homeless persons are likely to remain permanently housed when provided with case management and support services.”

According to City Hall, the non-profit group “has completed three permanent supportive housing developments with 90 residences” and “currently has an additional development in Santa Monica in the pre-development stage involving 34 proposed residences.”

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