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RISMEDIA, April 29, 2011—Recently, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced that more than a thousand extremely low-income persons living with HIV/AIDS will continue to receive permanent housing as a result of $23 million in grants. During each of the next three years, this HUD funding will help provide permanent supportive housing for 1,015 households, so individuals can manage their illnesses while receiving critically needed support services.

The recently announced funding is offered through HUD’s Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS Program (HOPWA) and will renew HUD’s support of 22 local programs in 18 states.

“These grants are a vital source of support to the local programs that are on the ground working to keep families healthy,” says HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. “Knowing that you have a place to call home can make all the difference to the wellbeing of families living with HIV/AIDS, many of whom have been on the brink of homelessness.”

These projects have estimated that about 40 percent of the households to be assisted will involve persons who have been homeless. The grants also support the Obama Administration’s new strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness, an unprecedented initiative announced last June at the White House. In February 2011, HUD released its plan to guide the agency’s actions under the National HIV/AIDS Strategy. As the nation’s housing agency, HUD will contribute a variety of housing resources to promote better integration of housing interventions into comprehensive HIV care systems.

Housing assistance and related services funded by HOPWA are an essential part of the comprehensive system of care for low-income persons living with HIV/AIDS. A stable home environment is also vital for these households in allowing them to access consistent medical care and maintain their health. Furthermore, secure housing can be a platform for improved quality of life.

Ninety percent of HOPWA funds are distributed by formula to cities and states based on the number of AIDS cases reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. HUD’s formula grants are managed by 124 local and state jurisdictions, which coordinate AIDS housing efforts with other HUD and community resources. HUD is making available a record $334 million in HOPWA funds this year to help communities provide housing for this special needs population. Overall, these resources assist 60,669 households annually to promote stable housing and reduced risks of homelessness for those living with HIV and other challenges.

For more information visit www.hud.gov.

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