Home For Good with the United Way of the Chattahoochee Valley says COVID-19 has taught them a lot when it comes to caring for people experiencing homelessness. They say this isn’t just a new normal for them, but a new way they plan to run their operation.
Since the pandemic began, Home for Good says they’ve seen an increase in 2-1-1 calls. In April of 2019, there were around 250 calls for food assistance. This past April, there were more than double that number. Pat Frey with Home for Good says although calls are up, so is the community’s support.
Frey says their efforts since the pandemic started has sped up the process for those experiencing homelessness and in need of assistance.
“There was a father and a small child who became homeless as a result of COVID. They were living with the grandmother who is in her late 70s and they had only been living there for a couple of weeks. She got scared and said ‘I’m high risk, I don’t think it’s safe for you to be here.’ So they were literally living in the car in front of their house. Someone told that person to call Ms. Tammy at the United Way,” Frey said.
Frey says the father and child are currently accessing housing. Normally the process would take up to three months and they were able to get access to housing in about a month.
Frey says they plan to keep the momentum going.
“All the agencies across the city have really stepped up and stepped in to meet the needs of clients. Whether it’s my client, your client it doesn’t matter,”Frey said.
In a couple weeks there will be a meeting with landlords, tenants and local realtors to try to put an end to homelessness in our community.