A few weeks ago, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that Washington state has been awarded not one, but two federal Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program (YHDP) grants. These grants reaffirm that Washington state is on the right path toward ending youth homelessness and that our state can lead the way for others.
The new grants, totaling more than $7 million annually, will go to Snohomish County and other rural Washington communities to boost efforts to end youth homelessness. This makes Washington state the only state to have three YHDPs (King County is the other recipient), totaling more than $12 million in annual support from HUD to address youth homelessness.
In announcing the grants, HUD cited the language in the application that “Washington State has one of the strongest commitments to addressing youth homelessness in the nation.”
Washington’s YHDP communities will use the grants to fund rapid rehousing and permanent supportive housing for youth, in addition to funding innovative programs like host homes and others as identified by the communities. Washington’s rural communities have made preventing exits from public systems, like child welfare and juvenile justice, into homelessness, a key priority for this funding. The communities have also prioritized closing educational equity gaps for homeless students.
We’re excited that Washington’s work to address youth homelessness has been recognized again by HUD, and we’re thrilled that our state can help lead the way to ending youth homelessness for other cities and states. The YHDP grants will be a critical complement to the statewide work that the Office of Homeless Youth and A Way Home Washington are conducting, especially the Anchor Community Initiative.
You can read the release from HUD in its entirety here.