The Rapid Re-Housing Program adds six rooms at A La Mesa hotel for immediate needs.
“It’s a major relief. It’s taken off a lot of stress.”
San Diego State University and community partner Home Start Inc. are making six rooms available in a La Mesa hotel as transitional housing for homeless students in an expansion of the university’s Rapid Re-Housing Program.
SDSU is among seven campuses awarded funding from California State University for rapid rehousing in 2020 under an Assembly bill specifically addressing student homelessness and housing insecurity at colleges. SDSU’s proposal was allocated $870,000, which includes $650,000 for Home Start.
“Our role is to support students to be successful, and our duty is to help them fulfill their basic needs,” said Chelsea Payne, associate director of the SDSU Economic Crisis Response Team (ECRT), which leads the rehousing program. “Housing insecurity and homelessness make it difficult for our students to be successful in the classroom, so we are doing everything we can to give students options to eliminate that obstacle.”
Rapid re-housing seeks to provide temporary shelter and supportive services for homeless individuals and families as soon as possible as a transition to permanent housing.
In addition to rental assistance and a housing locator to help students find housing across the county, the SDSU Rapid Re-Housing Program also includes case managers who aim to prevent students from slipping back into homelessness. The program, which has helped a small number of students as it got started, is now fully underway and looking to reach more SDSU students with housing issues.
“The Rapid Re-Housing program is incredibly important for our students,” said Dean of Students Randy Timm. “In addition to helping us live up to our values of creating a caring and inclusive community, the program supports our student success goals. Students will be challenged to do well in classes if they can’t meet their basic needs, including having a secure place to live.”
SDSU’s new partnership with San Diego-based nonprofit Home Start Inc., which supports at-risk youth and families, will provide transitional housing for students with immediate critical housing needs.
Supported by the state’s grant money, Home Start signed an agreement with Vista International Inc., which owns the Lodge of La Mesa hotel for six of the rooms to be used for SDSU students. The hotel owners’ plan is to work with community agencies who need transitional housing for clients.
Students can stay in the hotel rooms as long as they are actively involved with the Rapid Re-Housing Program and looking for permanent housing. The program pays for both rent and …….