What is Destination: Home and how does it help end homelessness?
Homelessness is an issue that affects every city in the nation. The City of Fontana believes that we can be of assistance in helping our residents who are homeless and working with them to bring an end to homelessness.
The primary function of Destination: Home is Street Outreach. City staff visits local parks and encampments to make contact with people living on the streets. This way, we begin to form relationships with them so we can learn more about their needs and struggles in order to craft a plan to exit homelessness.
Homelessness in Fontana
In the video below, Mayor Warren and Eric Gavin discuss homelessness and what the City and its partners are doing to end homelessness in Fontana.
1. Inform the public on homelessness issues.
This page serves as the central hub of homelessness efforts for the city, and we will promote the efforts through city news platforms and other mediums.
2. Decrease barriers for those ready to exit homelessness.
Through Street Outreach, we learn about the unique needs of those experiencing homelessness and are able to create a specific plan tailored to their needs.
3. Increase access to housing and resources.
We aim to take the less out of homeless by providing access to homes through the Housing First concept, explained below. Once housed, we work with local partners within the community to assist in providing much-needed health and wellness resources.
Who does this program serve?
We focus on those who are considered “literally homeless” and have no regular place to sleep at night, call home, nor store their belongings. We tend to focus on the most vulnerable as well - those who have been on the streets for a year or more, along with those considered “chronically homeless” who have significant mental or physical health issues.
We work exclusively with Fontana residents only, defined as:
- Those who can show proof of their most recent home being in Fontana
- Those who can show proof that immediate family members live in Fontana
- Those who the Fontana Police Department (or other trusted party) attest as being Fontana residents
Does Destination: Home partner with other groups or organizations?
Yes, a wide array of partnerships is critical to our success. Our partners include the many county-wide departments and social service providers, local law enforcement, our faith-based communities, Fontana Chamber of Commerce and business communities, as well as volunteer networks and any concerned citizen who wishes to be a part of ending homelessness.
What is the approach?
The causes and complicating factors of homelessness are as varied as are the people who are experiencing homelessness. We do believe, however, that the first step to ending homelessness is with a home. We embrace the internationally-recognized approach of Housing First and believe that Home is where we heal. Finding housing for the people we work with is just the beginning though. We work diligently to make sure that they can become self-sufficient. Once housed, we assist with items such as mental health, substance abuse treatment, financial literacy, employment preparedness, transportation, physical health, and feeling a part of their community.
How can I help?
Volunteers: We certainly need volunteers of all kinds and are happy to learn about your interest in helping. Please call (909) 350-7777 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Landlords and Apartment Managers: Part of the program’s services includes a Housing Assistance Program wherein direct assistance is provided to homeless residents who are looking to find their way off the streets. Assistance includes:
- Application fees and deposit assistance
- Rental assistance for typically up to 3 months
- Employment training and assistance
- Financial counseling and budgeting
- Community building
- Tenant rights and responsibilities
Landlords and Apartment Managers can read a letter from Destination: HOME's Housing & Service Navigator here, and read the incentive letter here.