Project Homeless Connect to provide foreclosure prevention services

Monday, December 6, 2010 at 2:26pm
Staff reports

To address the needs of 21st century homelessness, the Nashville-based Key Alliance has partnered with the Tennessee Housing Development Agency  to include foreclosure prevention services at the Project Homeless Connect event slated for Wednesday.

Project Homeless Connect removes barriers to housing and is the largest service event in Nashville addressing the needs of individuals and families battling homelessness.

THDA will bring to the event four partner agencies to provide information and/or counseling services for foreclosure prevention. The THDA partner agencies include Dominion Financial Management, Good Neighbor Foundation, Life of Victory International Christian Ministries, and Residential Resources.

Project Homeless Connect is slated for Wednesday, Dec. 8, at 8 a.m. at the Tennessee State Fairgrounds.

Families in need of foreclosure assistance should bring along their current income statement and correspondence with their service provider. People who cannot attend Project Homeless Connect can find a free TDHA foreclosure counselor at www.thda.org/foreclosure/counselors.pdf.

“The face of homelessness has been changing during the recent recession and needs are changing with it,” said Clifton Harris, executive director of the Key Alliance, a Metropolitan Homelessness Commission initiative. “We are grateful THDA is joining us at Project Homeless Connect. With its foreclosure counseling, THDA provides an essential service to this community.”

Harris said it is much more cost effective for Nashville to prevent homelessness on the front end.

“We know it costs our community an average of $35,000 per chronically homeless person per year in ER visits; in detox services, jail and court costs; and other services,” Harris said. “It costs on average $17,000 per person per year to provide permanent housing coupled with wrap-around services in our Housing First program.

“But it costs as little as $3,000 to $5,000 to help a family stay in their home,” Harris added.

According the Joint Economic Committee of Congress, the average foreclosure costs $77,935, while preventing a foreclosure runs $3,300.

Last year’s Project Homeless Connect provided more than 9,500 services to 1,500 individuals and families struggling with homelessness with the help of 60 service providers and 700 volunteers.

Citizens can join the Key Alliance (www.keyalliance.org) to volunteer for Project Homeless Connect, make a financial contribution, join the coat drive, organize a toiletry drive and learn about homelessness in general.