Background

Formed in 2014 as a response to an acute increase in homeless individuals drawn to an area of Greenville, the Greenville Homeless Alliance (GHA) works to strengthen partnerships and broaden support in an effort to increase options for individuals or families who are experiencing homelessness in Greenville County. GHA’s goal is to develop local resources that have the potential to marry housing affordability with highly specialized demands of local market conditions to ensure that homelessness is brief and rare. Data issued in 2018 documents a total deficit of 12,000 homes for households earning $25,000 or less annually. In 2019, 3.633 people experienced homelessness in Greenville County, one third of which were children. Data also revealed that of the more than 1,100 school-aged children who experienced homelessness, only 10% qualified for homelessness services from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Since no federal funding is available for the remaining 90% of these children and their families, the question the Greenville community must grapple with is who will help cover the gap. A gap that becomes even more pronounced when paired with the reality that Greenville County has very limited emergency shelter beds for families, and extremely limited beds for single fathers with children, single mothers with a son age 10 or older, or large families.

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Hollingsworth Funds’ Involvement

Hollingsworth is motivated to support the growth of GHA because of its systems-level focus on increasing the economic mobility of one of Greenville’s most vulnerable populations. The work of GHA is also closely aligned with other initiatives we support in housing and transportation. We have provided research and planning support in the past and currently invest in ongoing operating support for GHA.