While there will be extensive analysis of the data and the geographic and demographic findings from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority 2016 homeless count in L.A. county, Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley reports that the number of local homeless families seeking assistance has steadily increased.
Family Promise of SCV has been in operation for nearly five years and provides family shelter and services 365-days a year, free of charge. The program has operated at capacity and has carried a waiting list for over a year. “Even though our local economy is improving, the numbers of local homeless children and families in the Santa Clarita Valley continue to rise,” said Chris Najarro, Executive Director. “In the first four months of 2016 alone we have already assisted a total of 10 families though our Temporary Shelter Program, 10 household units (individuals and families) though our In-kind Donation Center and 4 household units (individuals and families) with 3-day Emergency Hotel Shelter. That’s a total of 88 individuals, including 49 minor children in all programs, combined.”
As a local not-for-profit organization, Family Promise of SCV relies on monetary and in-kind donations. “We are fortunate to have the support from our local businesses and faith communities as well as other non-profits, service groups and compassionate individuals. We are a daily example of what happens when a community comes together to take care of one another,” said Laurie Ender, president of the board of directors.
The Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, or LAHSA, is scheduled to release a report this week that details the findings from their 2016 homeless count in Los Angeles county.
The LAHSA report will provide helpful information for the government agencies and other organizations that assist the homeless population in L.A. County. Here in Santa Clarita Valley, Family Promise will continue to keep detailed statistics on local family homelessness. Najarro praised local efforts, “The collaboration with and contributions from our community are the only things keeping these families from living in their cars or on the street.”
Family Promise brings shelter, meals, and support services to families without homes and is a cost-efficient, effective community response to family homelessness. The goal of the program is to keep local families in their community and get them back on their feet and on the road to self-sustaining independence. Ender sums up the Family Promise mission, “We believe whole-heartedly that no child should be homeless.”
For more information on this or on Family Promise, visit www.FamilyPromiseSCV.org.