Since 1992, Christian Relief Services’ Homes for the Homeless Transitional Housing Program (H4H), in partnership with many local non-profits and government organizations, has worked directly with homeless families and individuals to help bridge the gap between our county’s homeless emergency shelter services and permanent affordable housing.
Christian Relief Services serves as program administrator, landlord, and property manager for 45 properties scattered throughout various residential communities in Fairfax County, Virginia. H4H participants are able to live in these properties for a monthly fee of no more than 30% of their monthly gross income. In return, they receive up to 24 months of safe and affordable housing, intensive case management, and other community based support services uniquely targeted toward the personal barriers they may face in obtaining and maintaining a permanent affordable housing situation.
While Christian Relief Services makes the housing possible, the following local and non-profit and government agencies collaborate with us providing over a dozen human service programs to get folks the direct services and transitional support possible: New Hope Housing (www.newhopehousing.org) Shelter House, Alternative House, Volunteers of America Chesapeake, Americans Helping Americans (www.helpingamericans.org), Friends of Guest House, and the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board. Each of these organizations provides expertise based upon individual agency mission and service delivery focus. This expertise may range from mental health and/or substance abuse treatment or aftercare, recovery from domestic violence, or the acquisition of employment and/or educational qualifications.
Through these deep rooted and successful partnerships, the Christian Relief Services H4H program is able to provide necessary services and the tools to many people with a myriad of different stories. There are families whose head of household has been diagnosed with a disability, families who are homeless as a result of fleeing domestic violence, single teen mothers, single adults diagnosed with severe and debilitating mental health issues and/or cognitive impairments, and individuals receiving substance abuse treatment and aftercare services. Each resident, regardless of their individual challenges, is provided opportunities to obtain the necessary skills, income, resources and services to achieve the highest levels of self-sufficiency possible to include securing and maintaining permanent housing.
During the last fiscal year, the Christian Relief Services’ Homes for the Homeless, or H4H, program provided 46 single adults and 38 families (including 40 adults and 78 children) with safe and affordable housing. Further, through its partnerships with the Fairfax County Housing Locator Network, a collaborative of Good Shepherd Housing and the Fairfax County Office to Prevent and End Homeless, the Christian Relief Services H4H program successfully transitioned 10 single adults and 12 families into permanent housing – so, no longer living in one of the homeless shelters or on the streets. For Christian Relief Services it’s about so much more than providing a roof – it’s about providing hope, respect and tools for the future. And we are very, very blessed to work with such wonderful partners like New Hope Housing and Good Shepherd Housing providing our neighbors in Mount Vernon and the rest of Fairfax County that all important hand up.