Housing Services at HSHM!
What is the Rapid Rehousing program about?
Rapid Rehousing is a housing program that provides individuals and families an opportunity to partner closely with our Housing Navigator. The person-centered services are designed to quickly identify housing roadblocks and eliminate barriers. We understand how important housing is to you, and our hope and desire is to realize that hope as quick as possible.
What are some of the ways the Rapid Rehousing Program can help me?
- Community networking with area landlords and property managers
- Advocacy, money management, goal setting
- Assistance with applications, navigating lease signings
- Financial Assistance with Security deposit, utilities, rent (conditions apply)
What steps do I need to take to apply?
- Call our main line at (309) 828-7356 and ask to leave a message on the “Housing Voicemail” - be sure and leave your first and last name, a good call back number, and your e-mail, with a brief description of your housing circumstance.
- Complete a phone screening - The housing navigator will return your call as soon as possible and will discuss some of the housing challenges and barriers you’re currently facing – allow 10 to 20 minutes for this call
- Allow 1 – 3 days for a follow-up call or email explaining your status:
- Accepted = a scheduled appointment will be offered to meet in person
- Waitlisted = approved but due to demands there are no available openings
- Referred = referred to another community resource for possible assistance
- Denied = does not meet the minimum requirements to be accepted at this time
An integral part of this program depends on building relationships with landlords both large and small. Landlords gain several benefits from participating in Home Sweet Home Ministries' Rapid Rehousing:
If you are a landlord interested in partnering with us, please contact Home Sweet Home Ministries' Housing Navigator at 309-828-7356. Thank You!
Bridge of Hope at HSHM
CHURCHES RESPOND. HOMELESSNESS ENDS. HOPE BEGINS.
Bridge of Hope is a 12-24 month program designed to assist families facing homelessness achieve family stability. We believe this includes safe and sustainable housing, strong and resilient families and supportive relationships with Neighboring Volunteers.
Bridge of Hope is a three-way partnership between:
- A Family Facing Homelessness (typically a single mother with two children)
- One trained group of 6-10 Neighboring Volunteers
- A Case Manager who trains and equips Neighboring Volunteers and provides services for each family facing homelessness
You Can Make a Difference. Become a Neighboring Volunteer.
- Open your heart: Give support, encouragement, and build a relationship.
- Open your hands: Offer tangible, practical support, such as help looking for housing and childcare, help with transportation, household furnishings, meals, etc.
- Open doors: Use your personal and professional networks to help a family find housing, medical providers, employment, or other resources to support a family's long term success.
For more information, please reach out to Home Sweet Home's Bridge of Hope Navigator at 309-828-7356. Thank you so much!
Neighboring Volunteer Spotlight: Christ Temple Church
Home Sweet Home Ministries is blessed to have Christ Temple Church as a part of our Bridge of Hope program. For the past few years, the church has provided prayer and encouragement to two families in Bloomington-Normal.
When Christ Temple Church was first approached to participate as a Bridge of Hope Neighboring Volunteer group, they were eager to get involved.
“When we heard about it, we were ecstatic,” exclaims Ericka Howard, a member of Christ Temple Church. “Our Pastor picked a group of twelve of us to work on the project. Home Sweet Home came out and did a training. We were excited to help someone transitioning into their own place.”
Little did they know that their first client would be a fellow church member. “Our first client had already been a part of our church for two years,” shares Ericka. “We became very good friends and I would always invite him to dinner. He’s a part of our family.”
Through prayer and support, the church has provided him with hope and strength to continue to move forward. Having great success with their first client, Christ Temple happily reached out to help another family in need. But this time, the church had to take on a new approach.
“The time we met our second client, it was at the start of COVID-19. So we did a launch Zoom party. We were all online introducing ourselves and sending her pictures of us so she could know the team she was dealing with. That was really nice,” says Ericka.
Even though they couldn’t meet in person, Christ Temple decided to reach out and do something special for their new neighboring family. “We all got together, we went grocery shopping, and picked up things she needed. We put it on her porch and then I called her from my car,” says Ericka. “I was able to go up on the porch with my mask on and just introduce myself. She was so happy and grateful. She just started crying and saying, ‘Nobody has done anything like this for me. I’m just so grateful that you guys are looking out for me.’”
Christ Temple is thankful to help however they can. “Whether it’s to come out and offer some encouraging words or to just be there for them when they’re going through something, you can be there for them,” exclaims Ericka. “It’s not financial all the time. Sometimes it’s just listening. It’s just being able to be there for them.”
Despite the current times, Christ Temple’s faith stays strong. They do weekly check-ins and try to do an event or something else special for their clients every few months. When a neighboring family needs Christ Temple’s support, they’re just a phone call or zoom call away. “Sometimes it’s just a text to say that we’re thinking about them. When you call them and reach out to them, it gives them a sense of openness. It allows them to be open and honest with you.”
Being a Bridge of Hope Neighboring group has been a real blessing for Ericka and her fellow church members. They say it’s been a rewarding experience to watch their neighbors grow.
“We just want to help. That’s our main thing, to go out amongst the world and spread the glory and gospel of Jesus Christ,” shares Ericka. “We are so happy to be a part of this program. No doubt it there’s anything we can do to help a church get involved, we’d be happy to give some advice.”
If your group or church is interested in learning more about helping a family facing homelessness, please contact our Housing Navigator at 309-828-7356. Thank You!
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