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HomeNewsLocal governmentDepartment of Human Services to Hold ‘Project Homeless Connect’ Events During May

Department of Human Services to Hold ‘Project Homeless Connect’ Events During May

One of Clay Jones’ photos of a homeless man is posted on an old telephone pole on St. Thomas. (Photo submitted by Clay Jones)

The Virgin Islands Department of Human Services (DHS), in partnership with government agencies, non-profits and community-based homeless service providers, will be hosting the 2022 Project Homeless Connect (PHC) events.

Project Homeless Connect is an outreach activity to assist the unsheltered homeless and persons at risk for homelessness to gain access to much needed services.

“DHS has a strong commitment to provide services and support to the V.I. homeless population. Project Homeless Connect is one way we follow through on our commitments to the community,” said Human Services Commissioner Kimberley Causey-Gomez.

Project Homeless Connect events will take place on all three islands in May. The events will provide critical services free of charge, including COVID testing, meals, vaccination and mitigation education, primary care medical evaluations, clean clothing, benefit enrollment, individualized personal care and the distribution of wellness kits. There will also be volunteers to help individuals establish linkages to service providers for continued engagement post event and establishment.

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The V.I. Department of Human Services will be offering MAP and SNAP enrollment. Medical services will be provided by the V.I. Department of Health and Frederiksted Healthcare Inc. In conjunction with PHC, partner agencies will establish a disaster registry of unsheltered homeless.

The registry will serve to ensure that unsheltered homeless are identified for access to services pre-disaster, during and post-disaster. The disaster registry will be conducted on St. Croix during PHC. St. Thomas and St. John disaster registry will be conducted during additional homeless outreach activities hosted by partner agencies post PHC.

Commissioner Causey-Gomez said, “The Project Homeless Connect events could not happen without our community coming together. The U.S. Virgin Islands is blessed to have so many caring people who want to support the vulnerable in our community. The territorial events will help link individuals to community services and help the GVI and non-profit agencies prepare for hurricane season, ensuring our most vulnerable are supported and accounted for in an event of an emergency.”

The last Project Homeless Connect event was held in 2015 and successfully served 217 persons on St. Thomas, 185 on St. Croix and 38 on St. John. Volunteers from government and community-based agencies have participated in the planning and will come together to support this year’s three-event effort.

“We are so thankful for our partner agencies for collaborating on Project Homeless Connect and for their unwavering support of our work,” said Causey-Gomez.

A special thank you is given to lead agencies: Methodist Training and Outreach Center, Catholic Charities of VI and Community First! These agencies play an integral role in working with the unsheltered homeless in the community, daily.

Event Dates

  • STT – Friday May 13, 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Charlotte Amalie Market Square
  • STJ – Friday May 20, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Port Authority Gravel Parking Lot
  • STX – Friday May 27, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Community First! (Formerly Villa Morales)

(Masks are required to receive access to the events)

www.dhs.vi.gov

The VI National Guard will be conducting temperature screening on all participants upon entry; any person with a temperature problem will be escorted to the medical area for further evaluation. COVID-19 mitigation supplies will be provided by the V.I. Department of Health to ensure a safe environment for volunteers and participants. Funding for the event is provided by the V.I. Housing Authority’s HUD Emergency Solutions Program CV Grant.

For general information, visit the Department of Human Services website at www.dhs.gov.vi or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/usvidhs.

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