January 31, 2018

Point in Time Count

Today is the annual national Point in Time (PIT) Count of those experiencing homelessness. This day has been a long standing measure of homelessness across the country, however it tells us little about homelessness within our own community. It continues to be of use in cities so overwhelmed with homelessness that most people sleeping on […]

January 16, 2018

Seeking Proposals for Evaluation

The Coalition is currently seeking proposals from providers with knowledge of Coordinated Entry systems to provide an evaluation of the Kent County Coordinated Entry system. The deadline for submission is January 25, 2018 and all proposals should be submitted via email to the address provided within the Request for Proposals. Coordinated Entry Evaluation Request for […]

November 2, 2017

Advocacy and Housing

Blog Post by Jesica Vail, Program Manager of the Grand Rapids Area Coalition to End Homelessness Yesterday I joined a panel conversation to speak to social work students about the role of advocacy in fighting against homelessness and for affordable housing. There was a lot of great conversation with these future leaders; it is uplifting […]

March 29, 2017

Housing First Overview

What is Housing First, and why do people keep talking about it? This great (and short) video gives an excellent overview!  

January 13, 2017

Funding Awarded in 2017

Over $5.5 million dollars have been awarded to continue efforts to end homelessness in Kent County through the 2017-2018 grant cycle. These grants are continued funding to projects already operating within Kent County, including one project initially awarded last year and just beginning its first year of operation, the Rapid Re-Housing Youth Collaborative. Our community […]

December 17, 2016

Baby It’s Cold Outside

It’s the time of year when people think about giving a bit more; it’s also the time of year when those experiencing homelessness are in the most danger.  How many of us are donating a toy, preparing a food basket, or rounding up hats and mittens? These are all thoughtful, caring gifts for which many […]

November 18, 2016

What You Need To Know

This Homelessness Awareness Week we have had several learning opportunities for those of us in the work of ending homelessness and the community at large. At the end of the day, however, learning about big picture ideas or national and local statistics does not tell you what you really need to know. For this post, […]

November 17, 2016

Homelessness: The Tip of the Iceberg

An often forgotten aspect of homelessness, that is critical to understanding it, is how desperately people try to avoid losing their housing. Homelessness rarely, if ever, occurs spontaneously in situations where people were financially stable. In those cases where the primary breadwinner loses their job, or a child became ill, or the car broke down, […]

November 16, 2016

The Cost of Homelessness

I talk about the moral imperative of not allowing any of our people in Kent County live and die on our streets. For some, this call does not resonate. There is still a strong undercurrent of the sense that people get what they deserve in life and that poverty and homelessness are only a result […]

November 15, 2016

An End to Homelessness

I get it, we sound nuts talking about ending homelessness. I mean, the audacity that WE could end this horrible plague on humanity that’s always been with us and always will be, right? And don’t some people choose to be homeless? Well, actually, no. Homelessness as we know it today is actually pretty new in […]