David Brotman (left) and Cindy Rozon (right) with AHC and Sarah Selvaraj-Dsouza (middle) with Restonstrong recently completed an in-depth training program with the Supportive Housing Institute of Virginia.
December 13, 2023
Restonstrong and AHC are working on an initiative to create permanent supportive housing for chronically unhoused individuals in the Reston community. The goal is to establish 40-60 apartments in the greater Reston area to serve residents experiencing homelessness while living on extremely low incomes. This effort will help address the needs of neighbors, including many living outdoors today.
Restonstrong is a volunteer-led, community action group created after finding an acute need among individuals experiencing homelessness during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.
Through food distributions and other community outreach, volunteers spent considerable time with residents of the encampments – with the goal of finding safer shelter, either temporary or permanent. Restonstrong discovered an immense need for housing that provides substantial services and creates a more secure environment. They learned many encampment residents experienced significant historic trauma, suffered from severe mental health illness, and resisted shelter opportunities either out of safety concerns or lack of accessibility, in the cases of older residents.
The vision is to provide housing while building a community that gives residents a sense of safety and stability. One of the first steps is to find an appropriate location, and plans are underway to identify a viable site to create residential space and provide robust supportive services.
David Brotman and Cindy Rozon with AHC and Sarah Selvaraj-Dsouza with Restonstrong recently completed an in-depth training program with the Supportive Housing Institute of Virginia. Completing the program was a key milestone – it qualifies AHC and Restonstrong to receive a $300,000 grant to help fund the predevelopment efforts and provided the team with significant technical assistance to develop the housing program.
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