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Regional Network on Homelessness Advocates with Revised Policy Brief

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development funds 16 Massachusetts Continuum of Care (CoC) grantees. In 2015, the CoCs collectively created 4,578 units of permanent housing and other supports throughout the Commonwealth.  However, the CoC grant application process creates a substantial administrative burden to the collaborative applicants which limits the ability of CoCs to effectively plan and efficiently end homelessness. In August 2016, each Massachusetts CoC collectively wrote and endorsed the expanded CoC Policy Brief: “Ending homelessness, improving efficiency: Recommendations for the HUD CoC program” pdf icon.  The policy brief presents six simple program fixes that will allow CoCs to focus on HUD priorities of improved planning and outcome-driven programs that end homelessness.

The local CoC is the Cape and Islands Regional Network on Homelessness, a broad-based public-private partnership committed to identifying and implementing creative solutions to preventing and ending homelessness on Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.  The collaborative effort of state, county and local government, social service providers, housing agencies, faith-based organizations, the business community and individuals is convened by the Barnstable County Department of Human Services.  In March 2016, the Cape and Islands Regional Network on Homelessness received $1,682,047 million dollars in HUD CoC funding to support twelve renewals programs that provide housing to over 140 formerly homeless individuals. The region also received HUD grants to support CoC Planning and the Homeless Information Management System (HMIS).  The 2016 award was a 12% increase over the previous year’s CoC funding.