ADDRESSING HOMELESSNESS IN OUR COMMUNITY
We recognize that poverty is a multifaceted problem that requires a multifaceted response. We respond by integrating educational outreach, smart programming, effective policies, and the hands-on work of hundreds of volunteers. We provide food, shelter, and support services for homeless families during their transition to permanent housing. We provide guidance and advocacy for families experiencing a housing crisis.
Because of the nation’s economic downturn, families are among the fastest growing segments of the homeless population. While we may not see them sleeping on the street, it has been estimated that families make up 40 percent of the nation’s homeless. Consider these sobering statistics:
The National Coalition for the Homeless estimates that 1.35 million children in the U.S. are homeless.
In South Carolina, the state Department of Education has estimated that nearly 9,000 children are homeless.
Here in the Midlands, Richland School District 1 says that 750 children do not have a permanent address. In Richland School District 2, the total is 400.
While much has been accomplished over the last decade to address the needs of homeless individuals in the Midlands, little has been done to address the needs of families experiencing homelessness. Due to their limited resources, these families often experience many barriers to receiving services. Family Promise of the Midlands has made a commitment to stand in the gap for these families, providing access to community resources as families seek to transition into housing.