The Whole Child selected for $5 million grant to combat homelessness
WHITTIER — The Whole Child, a lead housing agency for families experiencing homelessness in Southeast Los Angeles County, announced that it has been selected to receive a $5 million grant from the Bezos Day One Families Fund.
“We are honored to be one of the recipients of this year’s Bezos Day 1 Families Fund grant,” says Constanza Pachon, CEO of The Whole Child. “This grant comes at a critical point in the fight against homelessness in Los Angeles County. It will enable us to serve many more families with children experiencing homelessness.”
This one-time grant, awarded to organizations moving the needle on family homelessness, will allow The Whole Child to pilot various initiatives including employment and education/training services, longer term shallow subsidies to support housing retention for families and larger flex fund pools to remove barriers not usually contemplated on regular housing/rental assistance programs. It will also help build needed specialized shelter beds for families experiencing homelessness in the region.
The Whole Child is one of 32 nonprofits across the U.S. to receive the second annual Day 1 Families Fund grants see full list, as part of a broad investment to help solve family homelessness. The Day 1 Families Fund issued a total of $98.5 million in grants this year. The fund worked with an advisory board of homelessness advocates and experts who identified and invited organizations to submit grant proposals to support their efforts to address homelessness.
“With the help of The Whole Child, my family was able to find a place to call home after leaving a violent partner left us sleeping in motels,” explains Melina Gomez, who was helped by The Whole Child Housing. “Having a safe home for me and my boys has provided the stability I needed to find a new job and pay off my student loan debt. For the first time this year, we will be hosting Thanksgiving at our place! The Whole Child helps so many families and children. I can’t wait to see how much more they will be able to accomplish with this grant.”
The Bezos Day One Fund was launched in 2018 with a commitment of $2 billion and a focus on two areas: funding existing nonprofits that help homeless families, and creating a network of new, nonprofit tier-one preschools in low-income communities. The Day 1 Families Fund issues annual leadership awards to organizations and civic groups doing compassionate, needle-moving work to provide shelter and hunger support to address the immediate needs of young families. The vision statement comes from the inspiring Mary’s Place in Seattle: no child sleeps outside. For more information, visit www.BezosDayOneFund.org/Day1FamiliesFund.