Government

Willis Dady receives 2 housing grants to support homeless military veterans

(File photo) The Willis Dady Homeless Services shelter in southeast Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
(File photo) The Willis Dady Homeless Services shelter in southeast Cedar Rapids, Iowa, on Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Two grants have been awarded to provide housing for homeless military veterans in the Cedar Rapids area.

“Shelters in Iowa City and Davenport have had these kinds of programs for the last few years. Now veterans in Cedar Rapids and surrounding areas — including up north — can receive homeless services without needing to travel as far,” Phoebe Trepp, executive director of Willis Dady, said in a news release.

Willis Dady Homeless Services, which was founded in 1987 and provides shelter and support services to people who are homeless or near homelessness, received the grants for two housing models: Bridge Housing and Service-Intensive Transitional Housing.

Willis Dady will have five beds set aside for the Bridge Housing program. This includes short-term stays in the Willis Dady shelter for homeless veterans approved for housing but for whom housing is not immediately available. Case management support also will be provided “to bridge the period between shelter and moving into housing,” according to Willis Dady.

The Service-Intensive Transitional Housing program is designed for veterans with multiple barriers or who have been homeless in the past who may need extra services and time to find housing. The program provides stabilization and transition services during the move to permanent housing.

“We want to move people to housing quickly, and we want to set them up for long-term success,” Trepp said. “Service-Intensive Housing will help those vets who need more support services and more time.”

According to Willis Dady, military veterans make up 10 percent to 15 percent of clients in the shelter this year. The organization will work more closely with Veterans Affairs and Operation Home Team at the Hawkeye Area Community Action Program.

l Comments: (319) 398-8310; brian.morelli@thegazette.com

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