How can you stay at home when you don’t have one?
In this week’s first-ever Housing Virginia guest Microblog, Kelly King Horne of Homeward writes: how can you stay at home when you don’t have one? During the COVID-19 pandemic, addressing the needs of people experiencing homelessness is more important than ever.
As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads, we all face new challenges and uncertainty. People experiencing homelessness are among the most vulnerable in our community. Fortunately, Homeward and our network of partners in the Greater Richmond Continuum of Care (GRCoC) have worked tirelessly to support and shelter over 100 people experiencing unsheltered homelessness and continue to support 330 people experiencing homelessness in Central Virginia.
Following CDC and HUD guidelines, we prioritized assistance for those in encampments and those not yet connected to our coordinated network of services.
Our network partner, Daily Planet Health Services, worked to quickly establish a COVID-19 testing center for people experiencing homelessness. Additionally, the Salvation Army opened a high-risk shelter to support the safe sheltering of older/medically-compromised clients of the homeless service system. And, with support from the City of Richmond, a new emergency program placed 150 unsheltered persons in hotel rooms.
While these programs meet a critical need, we know that we have gaps to fill. Homeward and our partners are continuously sourcing new opportunities and partnerships to meet the shelter, housing, and supportive services needs of our most vulnerable neighbors. Our collaborative network continues to expand our ability to serve people in crisis and to protect those we are currently serving—all while continuing to focus on permanent housing options.
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This is a guest Microblog by Kelly King Horne, Executive Director of Homeward, the planning and support agency for the Greater Richmond Continuum of Care.
Housing Virginia welcomes guest blogs from our partners. If you have a message you’d like to share, send us an email.