Homeless Strategy

Homelessness is bad for our community: people who experience it are community members in dire need, and people not experiencing it are often negatively impacted by its effects.  Whether we’re experiencing homelessness, frustrated by what’s happening around our businesses or in our neighborhoods, or seeking to advocate and take action, we all want the same outcome: zero homelessness in Asheville.  By focusing on that shared goal and working towards it together, we can build a strategy and a community-wide response that ends homelessness and fosters a community where all of us can thrive.

People in our community experience homelessness when they’re unable to afford housing or lack sufficient support and resources during a normal life crisis.  The goal of the community’s homeless service system is to respond to that crisis as quickly and sustainably as possible, with right-sized services that may include homelessness prevention, street outreach, emergency shelter, transitional housing, housing navigation, and permanent housing with rental assistance and case management.  

The homeless service system is made up of an array of individual organizations with a variety of missions, approaches to service delivery, programs, populations served, and funding.  The Homeless Strategy Division’s role is to partner with and convene those organizations to develop a collective vision and an effective and streamlined community-wide collaboration to maximize resources and efforts to best respond to homelessness together as a unified Continuum of Care.

The City of Asheville is not a direct service provider or authority, and instead works to support and expand community capacity and strategies to meet the needs of people experiencing homelessness.  The City serves as the designated Lead Agency for the NC-501 Asheville-Buncombe Continuum of Care, and in that role facilitates community access to federal funding for homeless and housing programs, manages the Homeless Management Information System to help service providers collect data and decision makers evaluate performance, and supports the Homeless Initiative Advisory Committee, which serves as the governance board overseeing policy, strategy, and federal resource allocation for the Continuum of Care.

Seeking Housing Assistance?

  • Visit https://nc211.org or call 2-1-1 to connect with local resources.
  • Access the City’s 2021 Affordable Housing Guide in both English and Spanish for local rental properties. 
  • Code Purple is the homeless service system’s initiative to provide additional shelter beds when the temperature is at or below 32 degrees.  

 


How to Participate

Learn More

Take Action

Join the Homeless Coalition, a regular gathering of community stakeholders working together to improve service coordination and delivery across the Continuum of Care, or participate in the Homeless Initiative Advisory Committee, the governance board of the Continuum of Care.

Stay Informed

Sign up to receive updates from the Homeless Strategy Division about initiatives, training opportunities, and funding.

 


News and Events

  • The City has partnered with Buncombe County and Dogwood Health Trust on a collaborative project to better understand and respond to unsheltered homelessness.  That collaborative has contracted with the National Alliance to End Homelessness to lead the project, which began in June 2022 and will conclude in January 2023.  To learn more, visit the Understanding Unsheltered Homelessness project page.
  • Permanent Supportive Housing is an important strategy in ending homelessness, and the City has partnered with and invested in two upcoming Permanent Supportive Housing projects.  Homeward Bound is currently converting a motel to create 85 units for people exiting chronic homelessness, with occupancy projected in the spring of 2023.  Shangri-La Industries has just closed on the sale of 148-150 River Ford Parkway to create 100+ units for veterans and people exiting chronic homelessness, with occupancy projected 6 months after securing building permits.

 


Contact Information

Homeless Strategy Division staff value equity, problem solving, data-driven strategies, collaboration, transparency, and learning from experts, especially people with lived experience of homelessness.  Contact us to learn more about how you can be part of the solution to homelessness in our community.

Emily Ball

Homeless Strategy Division Manager

eball@ashevillenc.gov

(828) 271-6129

 

 
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