First-time homelessness increased by 16% last year across LA County, which means that current families who successfully beat homelessness are being replaced by new homeless families entering the system.
Median rent has increased in LA County by 32%, while the median renter income has decreased by 3%. 46% of those experiencing homelessness for the first time said it was due to a loss of employment or other financial reasons.
Door of Hope’s new prevention program helps these families before they become homeless – addressing their immediate financial crisis, preventing eviction, and planning for the future through case management and budgeting skills in order to maintain their current housing.
Churches would provide the one-time financial assistance ($1-$2,000/family) and could refer clients to the program. 100% of the church’s donation would be an immediate pass-through to the landlord; Door of Hope would cover all staffing and program costs.
One family we recently served was Cheryl and her 9-year-old daughter. Last year, Cheryl was on the brink of homelessness with nowhere to turn. Her rent was raised, she could not find permanent work, and her landlord delivered an eviction notice; not knowing where to turn, her church called Door of Hope. A case manager worked with her on a budget,helped locate more affordable housing, and acquired one-time financial assistance to pay her first month’s rent and security deposit. Now, she is working full-time and paying rent independently, savedfrom the trauma and disruption of homelessness.