DuPagePads Interim Housing Center: A Transformative Center to End Homelessness.
DuPagePads has taken the next important step toward expanding our capabilities to keep families and individuals safely sheltered while ending their homelessness. We have purchased and now operate a 130-unit Interim Housing Center (IHC) using a repurposed hotel in Downers Grove, Ill., where Emergency Housing has been provided since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The significant client successes, improved health and safety features for client families, and enhanced access to supportive services have been undeniable, making the IHC our greatest investment in our mission to end homelessness.
A Proven Solution With Improved Outcomes for All: Covid-19 forced us to meet our mission differently rethinking how to best provide interim housing solutions that help individuals and families move beyond homelessness. Expanding on the hotel based temporary housing that has helped over 430 individuals, including 130 children, since the pandemic began will be transformative to our mission. Providing clients privacy in a secure space to temporarily house themselves and family members has resulted in an 80% reduction in mental health incidents and a 75% reduction in health incidents such as flu, respiratory illness, or other physical health issues.
Our Interim Housing Center Prioritizes Families & Children: Approximately 33% of DuPage County’s homeless population are children. Parents experiencing homelessness are reluctant to utilize congregant sheltering or other safe environments because they lack privacy, security, and space for families to call their own. Repurposing this hotel property into our IHC helps prevent children from being forced to live in cars with their families or other more dangerous living situations. We prioritize rooms at the IHC to families with children, individuals with mobility or significant health issues, and those fleeing domestic violence.
A Center That Ends Homelessness: Once checked in, clients can focus on their wellness and stability, making it more possible to move forward using the suite of resources and support provided by DuPagePads to regain their independence. The IHC provides a central location where clients are not forced to travel daily, endure harsh conditions, or have concerns about where they may eat and sleep. It also provides community partners a centralized destination for delivering support services that align with ending homelessness. Since beginning this model in 2020, we have observed a 500% increase in the utilization of case support services by clients in interim housing.
Responding Beyond Covid-19: During the short-term, this model of hotel-based shelter demonstrated proven health, wellness, and security benefits. Providing a private room with washroom has proven to reduce the risk of infectious illnesses spreading to families, volunteers, caseworkers, and health care providers. Investing in our IHC provides assets to help end homelessness in our community and improve the overall health and safety of all our neighbors while supporting individuals on their journey to regain long-term housing stability.
The Way Forward: We are grateful to both the DuPage County Board and the Village of Downers Grove for their support as we continue improvements on this transformative center. We know that owning and operating this IHC will facilitate better outcomes for clients, and will also provide lower overall social and economic costs to our community as we improve the quality of life for families and individuals in desperate need of a helping hand.
Unlocking The Doors To Funding Success: This significant community investment and repurposing of an existing property would not have been possible without the generous support of individual donors, community leaders, and funding made available through the American Rescue Plan. Please join the campaign today using the form below and become a founding member of the DuPagePads Interim Housing Center Fund now!