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Cohen Announces $7M in Federal Grants to Address Homelessness in Memphis

Press release from U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, D-Tenn. 09; January 26, 2015:

[WASHINGTON, DC] – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today announced 34 federal grants totaling $6,909,905 to help local community organizations reduce homelessness in the Ninth District. This funding comes through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Continuum of Care program, which is designed to promote communitywide commitment to the goal of ending homelessness.

“This significant infusion of federal funding will help our communities and our local organizations work together to reduce homelessness in Memphis and improve the lives of individuals and families who are at risk of falling through the cracks,” said Congressman Cohen.

The 34 grants announced today include grants to the Memphis Strong Families Initiative, the organization One Door at a Time, the Beers-Van Gogh Center of Excellence, the Breaking the Cycle Shelter Plus Care nonprofit, and the Memphis Family Shelter. HUD’s Continuum of Care program provides funding to help non-profits, State, and local governments quickly rehouse homeless individuals and their families while minimizing trauma and dislocation. The program also aims to promote self-sufficiency among individuals and families experiencing homelessness.

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Comptroller Report: Homelessness Rising Among TN Public School Students

Statement from the Office of Tennessee Comptroller, Oct. 29, 2012:

Since the start of the nation’s economic downturn in late 2007, the number of homeless students in public schools has significantly increased both nationally and in Tennessee. Between the 2006–07 and 2009–10 school years, the number of homeless students identified in public schools increased by about 38 percent nationally (from 679,724 students to 939,903 students). In Tennessee, the number of homeless students in public schools increased by about 74 percent during the same period, from 6,565 students in the 2006–07 school year to 11,458 in 2009–10. The increases may in part be a consequence of job losses and other difficulties related to the economy that have affected families, but may also result from some school districts’ improved efforts to identify homeless students. This legislative brief describes the federal requirements under the McKinney-Vento Act for states, school districts, and schools concerning the education of homeless children and youth; the effects of homelessness on children and youths’ education, as well as effects for districts and schools; and some characteristics of children and youth in Tennessee who are homeless and enrolled in Tennessee schools, including their academic achievement.

Legislative Brief (pdf): http://www.comptroller1.state.tn.us/Repository/RE/Homeless%202012.pdf