Minnesota awarded $1.6 million to combat rural homelessness

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced over $1.6 million in grants to help fight homelessness in rural Minnesota.

HUD says the grants are part of a nationwide effort to address the issue of homelessness in rural areas. A total of $315 million will be given in grants to 46 communities across the country. 

In Minnesota, Continuums of Care, organizations that coordinated a homelessness response, will be awarded grants six areas:

  • Moorhead/West Central Minnesota CoC, $219,125
  • Northeast Minnesota CoC, $352,280
  • Northwest Minnesota CoC, $300,929
  • Rochester/Southeast Minnesota CoC, $281,762
  • Saint Cloud/Central Minnesota CoC, $147,577
  • Southwest Minnesota CoC, $342,170

HUD says in the upcoming weeks they also plan on awarding vouchers to help with housing unsheltered people. 

"We know that when we invest in housing people, it works. Statistics show that when people are sheltered, communities stabilize, criminal activities decline, recidivism is reduced, and overall mental and physical well-being is improved," Diane M. Shelley HUD Midwest Regional Administrator said in a release. "These grants, as well as the coming vouchers, will give these Minnesota communities the resources they need to solve unsheltered and rural homelessness humanely and effectively via a Housing First approach providing housing and services to address people’s unique needs."

The communities receiving the grants were asked to develop a plan to address homelessness in a way that coordinated health care providers, other housing agencies, and people with lived experiences. 

"Homelessness is a crisis, and it is solvable. Housing with supportive services solves homelessness. That’s why, for the first time the federal government is deploying targeted resources to meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness in unsheltered settings or in rural areas," Marcia L. Fudge HUD Secretary said in a release. "With these grants and vouchers, HUD is filling this gap and giving communities the resources and tools to improve housing and health outcomes for people on the streets, in encampments, under bridges, and in rural areas."