The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Coalition for Housing (CMCH), a joint City-County board overseeing the implementation of the 2006 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Ten-Year Plan to End and Prevent Homelessness, today released a progress report.
The report, Forward Movement: Ending and Preventing Homelessness in Charlotte-Mecklenburg, looks back to 2010. Milestones of the progress report to the community include many initiatives created to address the complex issue of homelessness and the development of affordable housing.
“Charlotte-Mecklenburg has made progress on ending homelessness by creating collaborative partnerships between the City, County, Charlotte Housing Authority and homeless service providers,” said Mike Rizer, former CMCH board chairman.
Implementation goals of the Ten-Year Plan include: 1. Getting homeless families and individuals into appropriate and safe permanent housing as soon as possible; 2. Linking chronic homeless to housing, treatment and services through intensive outreach and engagement; and 3. Promoting housing stability for those families and individuals most at-risk of becoming homeless.
Using a recognized national best practice of “housing first,” which centers on providing people experiencing homelessness with housing as quickly as possible, coupled with supportive services that provide case management services, is proving to be a successful model for Charlotte-Mecklenburg.
Between 2009 and 2014, overall homelessness dropped by 19 percent. The number of homeless individuals decreased by 40 percent; chronic homelessness decreased 23 percent and homeless veterans decreased 10 percent. Family homelessness increased 57 percent during this timeframe.
“These numbers show we are doing great work but there is still more to be done,” said Ken Szymanski, current CMCH board chairman. “Right now, the resources don’t match the need in our community.”
Carol Morris of the Foundation for the Carolinas prepared the report, which is sponsored by a grant from Wells Fargo.
Forward Movement: Ending and Preventing Homelessness in Charlotte-Mecklenburg is available online at charmeck.org/city/charlotte/nbs/housing/housingcoalition.