The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors approved $28 million in funding that will address housing insecurity for County residents. Of the $28 million in funding, $21 million will be allocated to add 352 new shelter beds to further expand the region’s capacity to serve people experiencing homelessness, $4 million will bolster rapid-rehousing services, and $3 million will go to address needs to prevent a reoccurrence of homelessness.
“With the number of unsheltered people in Maricopa County steadily increasing over the last five years, this Board made it a priority to put federal dollars to work to make sure this group of people disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 have access to shelter and services that can help them get back on their feet,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Jack Sellers, District 1. “Our goal is to distribute this money in a way that eases the burden of individuals and families while strengthening this important type of infrastructure.”
New Shelter Beds
The addition of the shelter beds is a collaborative project that will be achieved through the partnership of four local, community-based non-profit partners:
- Community Bridges will receive $7,558,372 in funding to construct and service 100 new shelter beds to serve men and women experiencing homelessness
- Tempe Community Action Agency will receive $6 million to fund the construction of 80 new shelter beds for emergency and bridge housing
- The Society of St. Vincent de Paul will receive $6 million in funding to construct 100 new shelter beds.
- UMOM will receive $1,441,628 in funding to construct and service 72 new shelter beds, catering to the unique needs of families experiencing homelessness.
Providers are not just making more sleeping space available for people experiencing homelessness, they will also continue to direct people to case management services and other resources to help them end their homelessness. These include access to long-term housing, and financial, wellness, and life skills needs.
“This is the single largest investment for homelessness Maricopa County has ever made, which results in a regional and comprehensive approach to responding to homelessness throughout our community,” said Jacqueline Edwards, Director of Maricopa County Human Services.
Construction on the projects is expected to begin in 2022 with the additional shelter beds slated to be available for service beginning in 2022.
In addition to the investments in shelter bed capacity, the Board approved $7 million in funds to help prevent homelessness and offer rapid-rehousing assistance. “With tight budgets, an unexpected expense can be a catalyst to set in motion events that lead to homelessness,” said Edwards. “We’re working with homeless service providers to quickly and proactively resolve these issues for individuals and families who have previously experienced homelessness, so they can remain housed and continue to thrive when they experience an unforeseen circumstance.”
These substantial new investments are in alignment with the recently adopted Regional Homelessness Initiative, a plan from the Maricopa Association of Governments to coordinate the various efforts of regional partners.
These programs are federally funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), enacted to provide programs and services to help people, families, and businesses recover from the effects of the pandemic. The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors approved spending priorities for $435 million in ARPA funds that can be tracked on a public dashboard.
For more information on the assistance that is available and making a positive impact for people in Maricopa County, visit www.Maricopa.gov/Rescue.
About Maricopa County Human Services
As the fourth largest county in the nation, Maricopa County’s population is large, growing and more diverse than ever. Maricopa County’s Human Services Department provides services and programs to people of all ages and abilities to promote their well-being. From offering early education to career training and employment services to case management for seniors and families – the Human Services Department serves as a leader in the region to support strong families, neighborhoods, and community relationships. Learn more about the financial, educational, and support resources available to eligible Maricopa County residents at www.HSD.Maricopa.gov.