The Lee County Continuum of Care is the name given to the group of community stakeholders who work together to address the needs of the homeless. It is a body of funders, providers, and advocates who meet semi-annually at the Lee County Homeless Coalition General Meeting, but whose work is carried out through many other smaller groups. The Lee County Homeless Coalition provides structured committees which address issues such as Community Education and Advocacy, Demographics and Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), and Prevention. The General Meetings provide monthly networking for the group.
The Continuum of Care is overseen by a Governing Board, which is made up of community volunteers that represent different community sectors. The Board has members from the Lee County Department of Human & Veteran Services and Lee County Homeless Coalition, and providers of housing, services, health care, education, mental health treatment, substance abuse treatment, and community advocates. The Governing Board meets quarterly, where they evaluate the performance of community programs and identify strategic planning initiatives.
The Lee County Department of Human & Veteran Services also serves as the Collaborative Applicant to compete on a national level for Homeless Continuum of Care (COC) funds through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The application includes over $1.6 million in requests for renewal projects and new requests for projects (when available) that address the needs of Lee County’s homeless. Funds support programs for permanent housing, emergency shelter, and services for the homeless are provided by the following funded agencies:
Continuum of Care funded agencies submitted renewal applications for the 2016 competition cycle. All applications were reviewed and ranked by the local ranking committee on August 11, 2016, according to the Ranking Committee Procedures using the 2016 Ranking Tool. The ranking committee results were emailed to project applicants on Friday, August 12, 2016. The complete 2016 Continuum of Care Application, including the Project Priority Listing and all Project Applications can be viewed below.
In addition to the COC application, Lee County has competed state-wide for additional funding to support programs for the homeless. When available, the Florida Challenge Grant, Emergency Solutions Grant, Homelessness Prevention - Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Grant, and the Florida Homeless Housing Assistance Grant have provided a variety of needed services and housing opportunities to various non-profit agencies in Lee County.
Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness
Lee County’s Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness was developed by eight subcommittees, but many community groups are involved in its implementation, and are working to accomplish the goals set forth in the plan. Organizations enter accomplishments made toward the goals of the plan in the corresponding Ten Year Plan to End Homelessness Database. A quarterly report on the progress is presented to the Lee County Human Services Council.