The Housing Assistance Program was developed by SEVCA to address homelessness and housing instability among low-income households in Windham and Windsor Counties. We use a strengths-based approach to help clients identify immediate needs, determine possible barriers to achieving stability, and identify resources that are available to address the situation. We then work with them to determine the most effective next steps. The housing assistance we provide may include payment of back rent to prevent eviction, security deposits and/or first month’s rent to assist with relocation, housing search and placement, landlord-tenant mediation, money management, and other assistance to ensure that individuals and families are able to maintain their current housing or obtain safe, decent, affordable housing.
Family Services staff also provide a crucial link to any needed services that the household may be eligible for by referring to and collaborating with other SEVCA programs, other service providers, assisting with applications for benefits, and coordinating strategies and services with state agencies and other community partners to meet critical household needs. This could include assistance with Seasonal Fuel Assistance, 3SquaresVT (Food Stamps), SSI, Section 8, Vermont Rental Subsidy, healthcare-related services, and other benefits as needed. Our goal is to maximize resources available to clients in a seamless fashion that will result in the least possible amount of stress and effort for households facing housing crises.
In the Brattleboro / southern Windham County area, two additional interventions are available:
- Housing Case Management services, which provide more intensive assistance to stabilize households with significant and persistent barriers to maintaining housing security. Housing case management is also available to households facing a crisis that is creating serious financial instability and is determined to require more concentrated assistance. The case manager will provide support and service coordination to the household as long as needed to ensure their housing situation is successfully stabilized.
- General Assistance (GA) Alternatives Program, which includes outreach to families and individuals who have recently become homeless, particularly those housed in motels through GA emergency housing assistance. Program staff provide housing case management and assistance to stabilize these households through access to more permanent housing options as quickly as possible, thus minimizing the time they are forced to remain in an inadequate housing situation in the motel.
Windham and Windsor County residents who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness should call 800-464-9951 and listen to the auto-prompt to select their local Family Services office.