Home / news / Shelter House gets $2.7 million for ‘Housing First’ project in Iowa City

Shelter House gets $2.7 million for ‘Housing First’ project in Iowa City

THE GAZETTE |  An apartment building providing shelter to the chronically homeless, but without imposing entrance barriers of a typical shelter, could break ground this fall.

The Iowa Finance Authority announced it was awarding $2.7 million to Shelter House to go toward construction of Shelter House’s FUSE-Housing First Project.

FUSE stands for Frequent User System Engagement and refers to transients caught in a cycle of jails, emergency rooms and substance abuse treatment centers.

Shelter House Director Crissy Canganelli said the finance authority’s funding, coupled with $463,000 awarded by the Housing Trust Fund of Johnson County, will pave the way for construction.

“We’re deeply grateful,” she said Thursday. “It’s a privilege to be able to serve our community in this way.”

Once completed, the FUSE project will be unlike other shelters in that the normal hurdles — staying sober and participating in social services — will be ignored in favor of getting the individuals into housing and allowing them to stabilize, while still offering support services.

Canganelli previously said the “housing first” model — which has been implemented in other cities around the country — represents a “paradigm shift” in the approach to serving the homeless.

FULL ARTICLE: http://www.thegazette.com/subject/news/government/shelter-house-gets-27-million-for-housing-first-project-in-iowa-city-20170803

Lee Herminston: (319) 398-8238; lee.hermiston@thegazette.com