“It’s hard to get any help for housing, so thank you,” a client recently said to our, Housing Navigator, Shane McKinlay. The housing system is complicated, and it can be hard to navigate alone, especially if you are already struggling. Many of the barriers to stability that people face are directly or indirectly related to housing. It’s such a pervasive issue that to move forward in our mission we needed to find a better way to help. Everyone deserves a safe place to call home.
When we learned about the Heading Home Corp program with Ampact, it seemed like a perfect fit for Valley Outreach. Thanks to this partnership we currently have Shane on-site as a full-time AmeriCorps Housing Navigator. “I help connect clients to resources that help them secure stable housing,” said Shane, “It’s a critical basic need and it’s very rewarding to be able to help. ” He assists clients with organizing searches for housing and accessing shelter services. He also helps people stay in their homes by working with them to access energy assistance or SNAP – programs that can help free up money for rent. Establishing relationships with individuals experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless is important. Because he works side-by-side with people, he’s able to assess their unique needs and set goals aligned with their situation. According to Shane, “Clients are thankful to have someone advocating for them in their quest for safe and affordable housing.”
Watch the video, The Next Chapter at Valley Outreach, on our home page to learn more.