District 5

BernCo Establishes Public Fund for Hotel Vouchers

02/02/2021

Bernalillo County is establishing a special account in the Bernalillo County quality of life fund which will allow residents to contribute to a program that offers families with school age children experiencing homelessness as a result of COVID-19 an opportunity to receive a temporary hotel housing voucher.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to help our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness,” says Bernalillo County Commission Chair Charlene Pyskoty.  “I’ve even heard of people, who aren’t in immediate need of their stimulus money, who have turned it around to help others.  Any donation will go a long way.”

The Bernalillo County Quality of Life Fund supports responsible and effective philanthropy to enrich community wellness and social and cultural experiences of Bernalillo County residents. Operated in partnership with fiscal sponsor, New Mexico Foundation, funds raised support unfunded Bernalillo County initiatives to increase amenities, create partnerships for collaborative programming, and develop resources that promote healthy living.

To make an online donation, visit the New Mexico Foundation at BernCo Hotel Voucher Program to make a one-time or recurring tax-deductible donation.

Currently Bernalillo County partners with the Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) McKinney-Vento program to support families with children enrolled in the McKinney Vento program who are in need of transitional housing support in the form of a motel voucher. The vouchers are available to families who have recently become unhoused due to the current coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency. This collaboration ensures that families have a safe place to stay while they work with McKinney-Vento social workers to establish housing stability.

The program participants are referred for a Motel Voucher through the APS McKinney-Vento program, which establishes a working relationship with the family. Upon receipt of the referral, the Behavioral Health Services Department will review, and then the placement process will begin. To determine eligibility individuals can complete the McKinney Vento Referral Form or contact McKinney Vento at 505-256-8239.

The families chosen for the voucher program will also receive a variety of services including school-based social workers who will continue to provide case management support to ensure the families maintain and sustain housing, while students engage in educational opportunities provided by APS, and assistance in seeking long-term housing, educational support, and case management services for the entire family.

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