If you are a Lakewood resident who is having difficulty paying rent because of COVID-19, you may qualify for cash assistance if you meet the eligibility guidelines.
The primary goal of Homelessness Prevention services is, as the program name implies, to prevent Lakewood residents from becoming homeless through a combination of case management, referrals to mainstream benefits and service providers and cash assistance for rent and/or utilities.
Housing Stability Case Management Services are provided to all clients. Housing stability can only be influenced by ongoing individualized services that include counseling, referrals and links to mainstream services and benefits, landlord mediation when needed, the development of an individual case plan with the goal of ensuring permanent, stable housing and ongoing monitoring and evaluation of the client’s progress toward meeting the goal of maintaining sustainable housing.
Housing Search and Placement Services are provided by LCSC social workers to all clients who meet the program eligibility guidelines.
The services are dependent on each client’s need for support in the search process. In almost every instance, clients need help negotiating with the landlord, most often to work out terms that allow them to remain in current housing after a court-ordered eviction has been filed.
For individuals who want to or are forced to move, the LCSC social workers make arrangements for an inspection to ensure a prospective rental unit meets HUD’s requirements and that landlords make the necessary repairs should the unit fail inspection. Most moving clients also need assistance – both cash and arrangements with providers – to get utilities either moved to a new apartment or turned on in the case of clients who have a utility shut off.
Financial Assistance in the form of security deposits, rent in arrears and utility deposits and payments can be available to qualified applicants.
LCSC’s Breathing Room offers short-term temporary shelter to Lakewood families who have become literally homeless and helps these families remain in Lakewood when they leave the shelter. A fully furnished and equipped two-bedroom apartment is available at no charge to qualifying families or individuals. While Breathing Room was designed for a maximum stay of 30 days, we know that securing affordable housing in Lakewood can be a challenge. As long as a client is working with an LCSC social worker, no one will be asked to leave until housing is secured.
Providing a safe and comfortable apartment is only a small function of the program, which includes an exhaustive list of services designed to not only secure appropriate and affordable housing, but to provide links, referrals and case management to families who stay with us – all with the goal of helping them to remain securely housed for the long term.
Cash assistance in the form of security deposit/first month’s rent/utility payments is available to qualified families if necessary.