One of the largest programs at HOME, Inc. is the Homeless Prevention program. By the end of 2020 we will have distributed approximately $520,000 in rental and utility assistance, helping 230 families avoid eviction. We help individuals but also families, we have helped several families of 6 and even a family of 7 so far this year. The average cost is around $2,000 per person, and continues to increase.
It is much easier and more cost effective to keep people in their homes, than it is if they enter homelessness. Providing rental assistance is cheaper than paying for families to stay in shelters and then having them need a deposit in addition to rent to move into a new rental unit. It is also very difficult to find new rental units if people have an eviction on their record. Then there is the added benefit of stability for all of the families. In the 2018-2019 fiscal year 100% of families with children that we helped were able to keep their children in the same school district.
At HOME, Inc., we focus on empowerment and education. We want our clients to feel empowered in their housing and have access to the resources they need to obtain and retain their housing status. As of 2016 Iowa had around 20 evictions per day and that number has increased drastically due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
We are thankful for our counselors that work tirelessly to prevent homelessness and educate our clients about their options if they are facing eviction. To donate to our homeless prevention program visit this link: homeinc.kindful.com