Faulconer, Educators Team Up to Help Children, Families & College Students Affected by Homelessness

Mayor, Gloria Announce First-of-its-Kind Partnership Between San Diego Housing Commission & SDSU

San Diego - With the goal of helping fellow San Diegans in need, Mayor Kevin L. Faulconer, City Councilmember Todd Gloria and SDSU President Elliot Hirshman today announced several initiatives by the San Diego Housing Commission to assist local children, families and college students affected by homelessness, as well as $10 million in new funding for affordable housing projects.

"Students should be focused on learning, not whether they have a place to sleep at night," Mayor Faulconer said. "These funds will ensure that vulnerable students can pursue their education goals without worrying about how they're going to pay for housing. By focusing on getting people into housing first and off the streets, we continue to make progress to end the cycle of homelessness one person at a time."

The initiatives, part of the San Diego Housing Commission's "HOUSING FIRST - SAN DIEGO" action plan, include:

  • A first-of-its-kind housing collaboration between the Housing Commission and San Diego State University to aid 100 college students who have been homeless or are at risk of homelessness.
  • A pilot program to be launched by the San Diego Housing Commission to assist 25 homeless families who have at least one child enrolled at The Monarch School, one of the few schools in the country that specifically serves homeless students.
  • The San Diego Housing Commission awarding $10 million in new construction funds to create additional permanent affordable housing with supportive services for homeless San Diegans for the second year in a row.

"Housing First - San Diego is making a clear, positive impact in our City," said Councilmember Todd Gloria, Chair of the Regional Continuum of Care Council. "By adding residential units for homeless individuals and seniors and awarding housing vouchers, hundreds of San Diegans are being assisted off the streets. No San Diegan should have to call the street home, and Housing First - San Diego is helping us address this critical challenge."

All of the initiatives are part of the three-year "HOUSING FIRST-SAN DIEGO" homelessness action plan kicked off last year by the San Diego Housing Commission, which administers homeless services and affordable housing programs for the City of San Diego.

The unprecedented partnership between the San Diego Housing Commission and SDSU will provide about $1 million in rental assistance for up to 100 students. They will be able to use that funding for dorm rooms, shared housing or apartments. The first funds will be available on Aug. 1, in time for the beginning of the 2016-17 school year. These students are part of SDSU's Guardian Scholars Program, which helps youth who are aging out of the foster care system, under legal guardianship, wards of the state or homeless.

"We are providing opportunities for students to get ahead in life, and I am thrilled that the San Diego Housing Commission has the flexibility to create cutting-edge programs that benefit our diverse homeless population in the City of San Diego," said Richard C. Gentry, SDHC President & CEO.

The partnership is a first-of-its-kind housing collaboration in the nation between a four-year university and a public housing agency to help students.

CONTACT: Craig Gustafson at (619) 453-9880 or [email protected]