- On April 3, 2020
Recognizing the added stress COVID-19 has placed on people in our community experiencing or at risk of homelessness, Wake Prevent! has temporarily changed the way it supports local families living in hotels.
Beginning April 6, families may be eligible for financial assistance to remain in place for up to 12 weeks if they:
- Currently live in a hotel;
- Have experienced a loss of income due to COVID-19; and
- Have children who are younger than school-age or students enrolled in the Wake County Public School System or a local charter.
Under normal circumstances, Wake County’s Housing and Community Revitalization Department aims to help people living in hotels find a more permanent place to live. But, given the outbreak of COVID-19, the Wake Prevent! program has reprioritized its efforts to focus on stopping the spread of coronavirus.
“It’s impossible to abide by the stay-at-home order when you do not have a home,” Wake County Commissioner Jessica Holmes said. “Refocusing our housing efforts is not only the right thing to do by our most vulnerable families, but this is also in the public’s best interest in our common goal to keep everyone healthy and safe.”
The temporary policy strikes the proper balance while Wake County works to battle both homelessness and COVID-19, said Lorena McDowell, director of Housing and Community Revitalization.
“By providing assistance to families in hotels, we’re helping to ease their burden and keep them safe, while also helping them follow the county’s stay-at-home order, so we can slow the spread of coronavirus in our community,” McDowell said.
For more information about the program and to learn more about eligibility, families can call 919-856-5661 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Wake Prevent!
Launched in late 2019, Wake Prevent! aims to help families in the most precarious of situations and at risk of becoming homeless. It is supported by local nonprofits Families Together, Passage Home and Triangle Family Services
Wake Prevent! rental assistance and case management services are available to Wake County families who are:
- At or below 50% of the area median income (currently $33,720 for a family of four); and
- Less than 30 days to becoming homeless.
They must also meet at least one of the following criteria:
- Currently fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence;
- Doubling up (couch surfing) and told to leave the unit;
- Notified by the property owner or manager that they must vacate a leased property;
- Paying for a hotel/motel without assistance; and/or
- Exiting an institution (mental/physical health, prison) with no resources or support system to assist upon release.
About the Department of Housing Affordability
and Community Revitalization
Wake County’s Department of Housing Affordability and Community Revitalization works to implement housing affordability strategies and services that are not supported by the housing market with the end goal of making the county more affordable to more people.
The department consists of three divisions – Housing Affordability and Community Development, Homelessness and Prevention Services, and Permanent Housing and Supportive Services — working seamlessly as a unit to make living in Wake County affordable and eradicate homelessness.
Wake County has made it easy for you to stay updated on the latest information about COVID-19. You can visit our COVID-19 webpage, which has a set of frequently asked questions to educate residents in English and in Spanish, a list of COVID-19-related closures and service changes, as well as an email address and phone number that people can use to ask personal health-related questions about COVID-19.
The county is also sharing important information on its Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.