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Southwestern Community Services
Housing Stabilization Services
 
Housing Stabilization Services   Southwestern Community Services, Inc. Housing Stabilization Services Program provides direct and immediate care to individuals and families experiencing homelessness or whose housing is at risk in Cheshire, Sullivan, and Western Hillsboro counties (and sometimes beyond). We are able to do this through the following programs:
 
Emergency Shelter
This program offers short term emergency shelter to alleviate a housing crisis. Access is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. There are four facilities in Cheshire and Sullivan counties.
 
Please call the Cheshire County shelter at 603.357.1654 or the Sullivan County shelter at 603.542.3160 for more information about the Emergency Shelter Program or Housing Stabilization Counseling.
 
Housing Stabilization Counseling
A comprehensive housing plan to transition individuals and families back into their communities in safe affordable housing includes:
  • Daily/weekly meetings with Emergency Housing Coordinator
  • Needs and Goals assessments
  • Referrals and support for substance abuse and mental health treatment
  • Budget counseling and savings program
  • Life skills workshops to include parenting, nutrition, time management, family planning
  • Off-site referrals to job readiness training
  • Telephone access
  • Tenancy 101 courses
 
Homeless Outreach
The goal of the Homeless Outreach Program is to aid the unsheltered homeless by seeking them out, offering first friendship, then assistance with shelter, food, medical treatment, and other basic survival necessities.

Please call 211.

Transitional Housing Program

The Transitional Housing Program provides rental units and a comprehensive program of supportive services to families that are homeless and in need of longer term case management.

Permanent Housing Units for Homeless Individuals and Families
Permanent housing units have been constructed or rehabbed for the use of homeless individuals and families in Sullivan and Cheshire counties.

Shelter Plus Care Program
Rental Assistance vouchers are provided to homeless individuals and families throughout Cheshire and Sullivan counties who are afflicted with serious mental health issues and/or substance abuse issues. The goal of this program is to provide a sense of stability and permanency to these individuals and families and to link them to available public assistance programs, job training, and other opportunities. In time, the recipients of rental assistance will actually be able to reduce their reliance upon this assistance and free up the resources to help an even greater number of individuals.

Rapid Re-Housing Program
Time-limited rental assistance vouchers and in-home housing supports are provided to individuals and families to help homeless people transition more rapidly out of the shelter system or to avoid a shelter stay altogether. The primary goal is to stabilize a consumer in permanent housing as quickly as possible.
 
For more information, or to obtain an application for the Transitional Housing Program, the Permanent Housing Program, the Shelter Plus Care Program, or the Rapid Re-Housing Program, please call 603.352.7512 ext. 4296.
 
Second Chance for Success Transitional Housing Program
Second Chance for Success Transitional Housing consists of a housing program facility with six self-contained rental units that include two bedrooms each, serving at least 12 homeless former inmates. There is a significant need for housing for individuals released from the local correctional facility, as there are not many housing options for this population in which to be discharged to. Along with the housing facility of this project, heavy supportive services are provided. These supportive services include, but are not limited to, mental health/substance abuse counseling, Life Skills training, Tenancy 101 training, employment training, and Case Management. Participants will pay rent based on their income and rent level restrictions.

SSVF Program (Supportive Services for Veteran Families)

The primary function of this program is housing stabilization for Veteran households in the western portion of New Hampshire (Cheshire, Sullivan, Grafton, and Coos counties). With intensive case management, financial supports will also be provided to include rental assistance, utility assistance, moving costs, child care costs, transportation costs, and emergency housing costs. This is intended to be a short-term (three months) intensive program to stabilize Veterans in their homes or in new homes.

Please see program brochure for additional information, or contact SCS at 603.352.7512 and ask to speak with an SSVF representative.

Housing Security Guarantee Program
This program provides no interest loans to eligible consumers for rental security deposits. An application for this program may be printed for your convenience.

Homeless Housing Access Revolving Loan Fund
No interest loans are provided to eligible homeless consumers for rental security deposits and/or first month’s rent.

Prevention/Intervention
Services under this program help an individual or family who is in imminent danger of becoming homeless. This includes landlord/tenant mediation, one-time financial supports, budget counseling, and referrals to other resources. For your convenience, an application for this program may be printed.

Tenancy 101
During this eight-hour class, participants will learn what to look for in an apartment; how to complete a rental application; what to expect in and how to prepare for an interview; whether or not the apartment is affordable to them; what a lease is; how to be a good neighbor; the pros of rental insurance; what is considered normal wear and tear; landlord/tenant rights; the eviction process; Section 8 housing; Housing Assistance Coupon Voucher programs; and lots more.

Life Skills Classes
Obstacles to self-reliance include the lack of information and the tools to expedite lasting behavioral change. Our consumers often need assistance in acquiring knowledge in the basic skills of daily living, such as budgeting, work ethics, personal and time management, nutrition, and parenting. Therefore, the Life Skills Program has been established to provide these basic survival abilities in an eight-hour day.
 
Please call 603.352.7512 ext. 4225 or 4226 to obtain an application or to learn more about the Housing Security Guarantee Program, the Rental Guarantee Program, Prevention/Intervention, Tenancy 101, and Life Skills classes.
 
Foreclosure Intervention/Housing Stability Counseling
The Foreclosure Intervention/Housing Stability Counseling program offers assistance to at-risk homeowners within Cheshire and Sullivan counties. This program offers step by step information and assistance to retain the home, share foreclosure prevention strategies, and offer transitional housing information. A housing counselor works with the homeowner throughout the mortgage assistance request and assists in communicating with the lender/servicer to achieve a successful resolution. There is no charge for this service, and advice is just a phone call away at 603.719.4294.

Forms to begin the process are available at both the Keene office and the Claremont office. The foreclosure prevention forms (application and third party release) may also be printed.

Once the forms are completed, they may be emailed to lmartin@scshelps.org; mailed to Southwestern Community Services, Attn. Lori Martin, PO Box 603, Keene, NH 03431; or dropped off at the SCS Keene office at 63 Community Way or the Claremont office at 96 Main Street.

Additional information on foreclosure can be found at www.homehelpnh.org, or by calling NH 211.

Food Pantry

The Food Pantry is a tool used in many of the other Housing Stabilization programs to help consumers lessen their financial burdens. When consumers apply for Fuel Assistance, Homeless Prevention Funds, Workforce Development, and WIC programs, a budget form is completed. Sometimes it is found that consumers are not able to purchase food or other necessary items because a lot of their income is spent on rent/mortgage, auto payments, fuel, child care, and so on. It has also been found that some consumers are not paying their rent/mortgage, purchasing fuel, paying taxes or auto payments because they need to purchase food and other necessary items. In response to this, SCS operates a small pantry that programs can use as a supplement to consumers’ budgets. A couple days’ worth of food or personal care items or a week’s worth of diapers can go a long way in someone’s budget.
 
For more information about the Food Pantry, please call 603.352.7512
 
Household Goods Donation Program
SCS’ Housing Stabilization Services program accepts donations of household goods (gently used beds, bureaus, kitchen furniture, dishes, etc.) to give to consumers moving out of homeless shelters into independent housing, who are in need of such items.
 
SCS is an Equal
Opportunity Employer
United Way
A United Way Agency
 
 
For more information, please contact:
 
Southwestern Community Services
63 Community Way
PO Box 603
Keene, NH 03431
Phone: 603.352.7512
Toll Free: 800.529.0005
Fax: 603.352.3618
TTY-NH Relay: 800.735.2964
 
 
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