Sadly, more than one in ten convicted persons will face homelessness in the months following their release from prison. Rather than reentering society successfully, an inability to find stable housing often prevents former offenders from obtaining employment and starting their new lives. If you find yourself in this situation, then there is hope. One source of relief could come in the form of a government housing grant for formerly incarcerated persons. Learn more about what these grants are and how they can help you find housing below.
Understanding Government Housing Grants for Formerly Incarcerated Persons
A grant is a sum of money that the government gives to a citizen in order to both stimulate the economy and provide public services. The purpose of housing grants is to assist individuals in need in finding stable housing. It’s a form of financial assistance, but it is not a loan. Grants are designed to help ease your financial strain, so they do not have to be repaid.
Eligibility Criteria for Housing Grants for Formerly Incarcerated Persons
Most housing grants do not discriminate based on former criminal convictions. That said, you could still potentially face limitations on where you can live based on the type of crime you committed in the past. If your crime was violent, then you could still face denials when the unit you’re looking at is in close proximity to other families or units.
As you apply for housing, be sure to always be honest about your criminal history. Lying about a previous conviction can disqualify you from being eligible for housing or a grant.
Finding Appropriate Grants
If you’re looking for a grant, then you can use online search portals like Grants.gov to help you locate available grants. You’ll want to read through the different options to find a grant that you’re eligible to apply for. You can use the sidebar to check and uncheck certain criteria to help you narrow down your search. Before you apply for a grant, be sure to thoroughly read through the requirements, updated policies, and the available funds. If you think you’ve found a match, then it’s time to move on to the application process.
The Application Process
When you find a grant that you look eligible for, it’s time to apply. First, you’ll need to fill out an application with your personal details. You’ll create a username and password. Once you’re all signed up, you can locate the right grant and start your application. You can track your status directly on the site.
As you go through the process, do your best to be as accurate and honest as possible. If you need any additional help, consider reaching out to a lawyer, housing counselors, or a non-profit for assistance with your application.
Utilizing Additional Resources
If you struggle with these options, then you can consider reaching out to non-profit organizations, community programs, or visiting your local housing authority. Re-entry programs are also a great choice since these are specifically designed for previous offenders.
Success Tips and Best Practices
Know that you will face challenges as you seek out housing. Try not to take rejection personally and remain hopeful no matter what. All it takes is for one person to say ‘yes’ for you to get your big break. In the meantime, keep looking for grant opportunities, following up on applications, and looking for more options.
How Government Grants Can Help You
Government grants are a form of financial relief designed to help support you in your journey towards obtaining stable housing. If you’re a formerly incarcerated person, then there could be a grant that you’re eligible for. The only thing that’s stopping you is getting informed, finding the right grant, and applying!
Your fresh start could be right around the corner. Check out our additional resources for more details on how to obtain housing as soon as possible.