News / Blog
CCCC Helps Families Pay Rent with New Grant
By Natalie Hornstein; CCCC Community Connections Specialist |
In early 2021, Clackamas County received a grant to provide rent assistance and case management services to families experiencing homelessness. Soon after, ClackCoKids assumed management of this $243,000 grant, eager to impact the growing concern of homelessness in our community during a housing crisis made worse by the global pandemic.
Project services began in June of 2021 and since that time ClackCoKids has served 22 families throughout the tri-county area. To qualify for the program, families must meet the grant’s definition of ‘homeless’, meaning they lack a nighttime residence and are sleeping at least one night a week on the street.
ClackCoKids Family Support Specialist Sara Castañeda and Family Advocate Jenny Hopkins lead this project, working directly with each qualifying family to find stable housing. In addition to paying their rent each month, Sara and Jenny also provide 1:1 support to families, connecting them to much needed resources (such as employment, childcare, and more) and planning for sustainable housing after the grant support ends.
“When I started working in the rapid rehousing program in January 2021, I wasn’t sure what to expect,” says Sara. “Now I’m am so grateful to be part of this amazing program. We are giving hope to so many people that were struggling to maintain stable housing. We all know that housing is a big problem around the area, and I think some of us feel hopeless to not be able to help or be able to do anything about it. For those 22 families we have changed their lives, and now they have hope for the future.”