Team of People Finds Family a Home – HSP in Placer County
For 10 years, Kelcie supported her family working for a cleaning service in Placer County. When the cleaning service closed down in 2013 and she lost her job, she tried to support her husband, who is on disability, and their daughter through small jobs. But they struggled to make ends meet. They moved in with a family member in exchange for being the family member’s caregiver and sublet their rental home. But the arrangement did not work out and Kelcie and her family lost their rental home and their $1,500 deposit. Suddenly, the family was unemployed and homeless.
The family bounced around from hotels to friends’ couches to campgrounds. Kelcie recently told the Auburn Journal: “I was giving my daughter a bath in the ice chest every day.” Her daughter changed schools three times in three years.
Kelcie turned to the Placer County Human Services Department where staff enrolled her and her family in the CalWORKs Housing Support Program, connecting her with a full-time job and finding the family a permanent home. “There was a whole team of people helping me,” Kelcie said. “I was even able to go to therapy.”
For the county and its community partner, investing the time and funding into families like Kelcie’s just makes sense. “It’s been shown that people who (have) housing have a better chance of getting jobs and retaining jobs,” said Jennifer Price with Advocates for Mentally Ill Housing, which is partnering with the county to help families find housing. “How can you save up for a (rental) deposit when you don’t have any work?”
Kelcie said her county Housing Support Program caseworker never gave up on her and filled the shoes of “10 people.” “When you don’t feel like doing it anymore, she (talks) you into doing it,” she said. “She goes above and beyond.”