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Collaboration and Creativity: Housing for the unsheltered in Dallas

North Texas is making a big commitment to ending inner-city homelessness. Last month, the city of Dallas announced a multimillion-dollar partnership projected to provide housing to over half of its four thousand unsheltered inhabitants. The collaboration will be the largest one in North Texas history, with organizations such as the Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance and the Grand Prairie Homeless Collaborative spearheading the effort.  

Overall, the project will be a 70 million dollar investment, with the bulk of funding coming from the city of Dallas and Dallas County, while the remaining costs will be covered by philanthropic organizations. An additional nine million dollars will be allocated to various non-profits which are tasked with providing immediate relief.  

By September of 2023, the program as a whole is expected to provide almost 700 families with vouchers for permanent housing, and an additional 2,000 with temporary housing and employment services. To reach those numbers, planners have already begun acquiring abandoned or undervalued properties, and converting them into affordable living spaces.    

The vouchers—which are permanent subsidies—will be given to those deemed most at risk, primarily domestic violence survivors, at-risk families, and the chronically homeless. These vouchers, subsidized by the US Housing and Urban Development Program, take advantage of federal support for rapid rehousing.  

Rapid rehousing represents a humane means to resolve tent encampments in a way that will better both the city and the lives of homeless people. Over the next two years, Dallas authorities expect to see a dramatic decrease in encampments, as individuals are phased into housing programs.  

 The housing project in Dallas represents a momentous collaboration between government and private entities that addresses the current needs of the city and takes advantage of federal policy for community betterment.  

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