Hawaii is set to receive more than $30.8 million in federal funding to help homeless families and individuals during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz.
Schatz said county governments will be able to use the funds – authorized by the coronavirus aid bill — to improve and operate emergency shelters, rehouse homeless families, and provide mental health support, job assistance, and other essential services.
“Our homeless population is among the most vulnerable to the pandemic, and it’s our responsibility to help keep them safe,” said Schatz in a news release. “This new federal funding will give us more resources to help shelter homeless families and provide them with the critical services they need.”
The funding came from the U.S. Department of Housing’s Emergency Solutions Grant, according to Schatz, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee.
With the funds, county governments may deliver services directly to homeless communities or provide grants to nonprofit service providers. The funds may be used to address disease transmission, as well as activities to prevent families and individuals from becoming homeless.
Schatz said Hawaii previously received nearly $4 million from the program’s first round of funding.