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Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Invest Atlanta celebrate $50 fundraising goal for homelessness in city

(Photo: City of Atlanta)

By Marshall A. Latimore

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announced the completion of a $50 million goal for HomeFirst Atlanta —a partnership between the City of Atlanta, Invest Atlanta (IA) and the United Way Regional Commission on Homelessness (RCOH) in a press conference on Wednesday morning.

HomeFirst investments are aligned with the community-wide strategic plan, which was approved by the City Council with the support of then Councilmember Bottoms. The partnership is designed to ensure homelessness in Atlanta is rare, brief and nonrecurring. Ameris Bank pledged the final donation of nearly $114,000 to complete the funding goal.

“HomeFirst will create 550 units of permanent supportive housing that will be part of larger developments that will contribute, in aggregate, more than 2,500 units of affordable housing,” Bottoms said. “We are building a compassionate community of trusted partners who approach homelessness in a strategic, transparent and accountable way. The results show that it is working.”

As of today, HomeFirst has committed approximately $22 million of the funds raised. These investments include low barrier shelters for men, women and families; enhanced street outreach; an eviction prevention and diversion project to keep children housed and in their school of origin; rapid rehousing for families experiencing homelessness; and innovative housing programs for homeless youth.

HomeFirst has also begun committing grants to housing developers to create permanent supportive housing units in partnership with Atlanta Housing and Fulton County. The 550 units of permanent supportive housing that HomeFirst will create will be part of larger developments that will contribute to aggregating more than 2,500 units of affordable housing.

As outlined in the One Atlanta Vision, Mayor Bottoms has set a goal to ensure that a clear pathway is provided to affordable and equitable housing opportunities for all who desire to call Atlanta home.

For more information on HomeFirst Atlanta and Partners for HOME visit: partnersforhome.org/homefirst/

This article originally appeared in The Atlanta Voice.

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