The West Piedmont Better Housing Coalition, Inc. was organized
to develop the West Piedmont Planning District's Continuum of Care
planning and implementation of services to address homelessness
in the area. The organization evolved from a Steering committee made up of representatives from a wide variety
of public and private agencies and organizations to address the
needs of homeless individuals from the cities of Danville and Martinsville as well as the counties of Franklin, Henry, Patrick, and Pittsylvania. The West Piedmont Better Housing Coalition, Inc. seeks to assure that every individual and family, including the at-risk, has a safe, quality, and affordable place to live. The
WPBHC serves the cities of Danville and Martinsville, and the counties
of Franklin, Henry, Patrick, and Pittsylvania. The West Piedmont
Better Housing Coalition, Inc. seeks to assure that every individual
and family, including the at-risk, has a safe, quality, and affordable
place to live. We seek to provide a continuum of care for the citizens
of these areas.
The Coalition will advocate for safe, quality and affordable housing
for those in need, including the homeless, through leadership, assessment,
coordination, and expansion of existing services and creation of
What Does Homelessness Mean?
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development defines homelessness as:
- People who are living in a place not meant for human habitation, in an emergency shelter, in transitional housing, or are exiting an institution where they temporarily resided for up to 90 days and were in shelter or a place not meant for human habitation immediately prior to entering that institution.
- People who are losing their primary nighttime residence, which may include a motel or hotel or a doubled up situation, within 14 days and lack resources or support networks to remain in housing.
- Families with children or unaccompanied youth who are unstably housed and likely to continue in that state. This applies to families with children or unaccompanied youth who have not had a lease or ownership interest in a housing unit in the last 60 or more days, have had two or more moves in the last 60 days, and who are likely to continue to be unstably housed because of disability or multiple barriers to employment.
- People who are fleeing or attempting to flee domestic violence, have no other residence, and lack the resources or support networks to obtain other permanent housing.
What is a Continuum of Care?
The Continuum of Care serves three main purposes:
Services and Resources include, but are not limited to:
- It is a strategic plan for addressing homelessness in the community,
based on the identified needs of homeless individuals and families,
the availability and accessibility of existing housing and services,
and the opportunities for linkages with non-homeless mainstream
housing and service resources;
- It is a strategic process to develop a broad based, community
wide, year round initiative; and
- It is an application to HUD for homeless-targeted housing and
- Homeless Prevention - Assistance to help people maintain their
housing and prevent homelessness.
- Outreach, Intake and Assessment - To identify an individual's
or family's needs and link them to appropriate housing and/or
- Emergency Shelter - Short term, safe and decent shelter provided
as an alternative to the streets.
- Transitional Housing - Housing with supportive services to
help people develop the skills they need to live in permanent
- Supportive Services - Supportive services should be available
throughout the Continuum of Care in order to address the specific
needs of each individual. Supportive services may be provided
in conjunction with housing, or through referral. Services should
be available to address both the immediate and long term needs
of homeless persons, such as education, employment assistance,
health care, substance abuse treatment and mental health care,
child care, transportation and other services.
- Permanent Housing - Affordable housing in which residents pay
no more than 30% of their income for housing costs.
- Permanent Supportive Housing - Housing with supportive services
designed to allow persons with disabilities to live in the community
as independently as possible.