A collaborative effort to help the homeless in Boise with housing

Posted at 5:48 PM, Aug 24, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-24 19:48:05-04

The New Path Community Housing is Idaho's first of its kind and will offer 41 units in an apartment complex for the homeless in an effort to help build a stronger community in Boise.

But how will it be determined who gets to live in these homes? What are the details? and how can the collaborative team that put together this innovative approach help get the homeless back on their feet?

It starts with Catch Incorporated who is leading the charge along with 33 other agencies that have spent the time getting to know the homeless people in Boise.

“In the first year of the partnership, our path home, we assessed 674 households that represent over 1600 people in Ada County experiencing homelessness," said Wyatt Schroeder the Executive Director of Catch.

Through the vetting process and learning the stories behind the people who live on the streets that led to putting together a coordinated waiting list for the New Path Community Housing project.

Once that is complete residents will be able to move into the apartment complex and will be required to pay 30 percent of their income for rent and utilities, of course, if a person doesn't have any income the vouchers will cover the bills in full.

"We hope over time this will increase their financial stability and they will eventually be able to move on from this project," said Brady Ellis of the Idaho Housing & Finance Association. "Although there are some we know that will have disabilities and certain limitations that will require that they remain here as long as is needed."

Residents will also have on-site services provided by Terry Reilly Health Services that will include health care, life skills training and counseling.

That team will consist of a nurse, a case manager who is also a substance abuse expert, a social worker, a housing specialist and two people who used to be homeless themselves.

"A lot of people going in there have had a lot of experience with professionals, but it is a different interaction with a peer," said Kendra Lutes of Terry Reilly Health Services. "We want to help the residents reach their own goals."

The New Path Community Housing project will be finished by November.