New funding and expanded resident services will help people living at Maxwell House apartments work toward a more independent and stable lifestyle.
Action Ministries Housing received a $100,000 grant from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs to provide housing vouchers for 13 units reserved for shelter-plus-care residents, a government program that provides rental assistance and support services to homeless people with disabilities.
The organization received additional funding from the city of Augusta, the property owner, churches and foundations to run on-site supportive services for all residents at the apartments.
Maxwell House, at 1002 Greene St., is a 216-unit development that serves low-income adults. It is owned by E&G Group of McLean, Va.
A company that was handling housing vouchers and resident services did not renew its contract.
Action Ministries Housing will staff the site with an on-site manager, a part-time case manager and an activities coordinator, said Mackenzie Harkins, the ministry’s director of new housing initiatives.
Beginning Aug. 1, services will include crisis intervention, individual and group counseling, addiction recovery programs and computer training. Staff will also help coordinate health care needs for residents, making referrals to agencies, facilities and doctors.
“The need is there. The majority of clients are working through addictions, mental health issues, HIV/AIDS,” Harkins said.
The case managers will ensure residents are receiving proper food stamps, Social Security and veterans benefits and medical care, she said.
“The residents are usually more self-sufficient but need help connecting with services to make sure their life remains stable,” Harkins said.
Danielle Meyer, an Actions Ministries case manager for transitional housing, said the program will serve many clients who lack stable jobs and live on a fixed-income.
Shelter-plus-care and supportive services offers an alternative to incarceration, living in mental health institutions and reverting to homelessness.
“Having this program here helps keep those people that would otherwise be on the streets in housing,” Meyer said.
The 13 shelter-plus-care units are occupied and no residents will be removed. Actions Ministries will take referrals for the units when vacancies open.
The Maxwell House initiative is the first permanent supportive services housing for Action Ministries.
The organization operates transitional housing programs in Augusta, Athens, Atlanta, Gainesville, Decatur, Rome and rural areas.
Transitional housing helps people become self-sufficient in a short time period, and shelter-plus-care residents will need long-term assistance, Meyer said.