OGDEN -- When it comes to fighting against homelessness, Catholic Community Services of Northern Utah is losing its strong arm.
The agency is spending the last of its American Recovery Act funds, sometimes referred to as stimulus money, that it has been using for a Homeless Prevention and Recovery Program (HPRP) and a Rapid Rehousing Program in Weber County.
The organization received about $1 million to help with this need and it will run out of that money next month.
"Over the past 3 years, we spent an average of $25,000 per month on rehousing the homeless and providing rental assistance in order to prevent homelessness," said Marcie Valdez, director of Catholic Community Services of Northern Utah.
That previous monthly amount is the same as the total United Way of Northern Utah will be able to give the agency for homeless prevention for the entire year of 2012.
"The United Way funding will average out to be about $2,000 per month," Valdez said.
A Temporary Assistance for Needy Families grant the agency will receive for families this year from the state will amount to an average of $7,000 per month -- much less than what the agency has previously had available to work with.
"That's going to impact a lot of programming as we go forward, because Catholic Community Services won't have the kind of money it's had in the past to put into rapid rehousing," said Leslie Herold, senior director of community impact at United Way of Northern Utah.
"Unfortunately, the funding that is replacing the HPRP is not anywhere near what we have received in the past," Valdez said. "The loss of funding is going to create a critical gap in services in Weber County and across the state for families and individuals who are struggling with housing needs."
She said that over the past three years, her agency worked in collaboration with YCC, St. Anne's Shelter, Ogden Rescue Mission and others in an effort to house 220 homeless households and assist 428 households that were at risk of becoming homeless.
A total of 648 households received financial assistance and case management through these programs since September 2009.
But Valdez said she's thankful for the funding her staff will have, although it's far less than they are used to.
"With the new funding Catholic Community Services anticipates being able to assist approximately six to 10 households each month, where in the past we were able to serve 40 to 50," she said.
A hole that will not be filled, she said, is prevention management.
That's one service the American Recovery Act covered that won't be covered with this year's funding.