Good public policy and good fiscal policy.

With more than 40% of Americans a $400 expense away from financial distress, the threat of crisis looms closely for too many families. Preventing families from spiraling into homelessness is an essential part of the Family Promise mission.

Affiliates offer a variety of strategies to ensure the people we serve do not fall into the cycle of housing instability that can devastate families and alter the course of children’s lives. These include administering  formal diversion programs with government funding, providing rental assistance and landlord mediation, and community-based approaches that keep families housed.

Our national partnership with Help Us Move In (HUMI) helps support prevention programming in Affiliates and is an example of how best practices are applied through our federated model.

Getting out in front of the issue is the most cost-effective way to address this crisis.  Prevention measures cost a fraction of the funds required to rehouse a family once they lose their home.

Ultimately, the cost–both human and financial—of allowing homelessness to exist is staggering. Youth who experience homelessness  are 20% less likely to graduate high school than their peers. High school dropouts contribute less tax revenue and rely more heavily on public services. Failure to finish high school results in an estimated net negative of $127,000  per child.

With  each new generation facing homelessness, those debts compound, creating  decades of societal costs with every homeless child. Preventing homelessness is an incredibly sound investment in our children’s futures.

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