Constituent of Congressman Lance Urges Congress to Stop Cuts to Affordable Housing and Increase Funding to End Homelessness
Nichole Allen, along with her son, attended the 2018 Congressional Reception on July 25 to share her personal story of homelessness and how affordable housing is the key. Nichole lives in Cranford and is a constituent of U.S. Representative Leonard Lance (R-NJ-7.)
At the Congressional Reception, Nichole shared that prior to becoming homeless she was only six credits away from receiving her bachelor’s degree in psychology. But between having to juggle school work, being a single mom, and having to work to pay the bills, Nichole soon found herself having to make the difficult decision of moving to a shelter.
“I had to begin contemplating going to a shelter,” said Nichole. “That was the scariest thought ever. I never thought I would be living in a shelter.”
Nichole sought access to affordable housing but was rejected by several agencies. Thankfully, Nichole was accepted to the Family Promise Union County Program shelter. “It was the best thing that could have happened to me,” said Nichole.
Nichole told the Congressional Reception audience that Family Promise helped her with so much more than just housing. Family Promise gave her and her son counseling, paid for the repairs for her car, helped her find a job as a substitute teacher, and paid for her to go back to school and finish getting her bachelor’s degree.
“A homeless person sometimes just needs to be seen,” said Nichole. “They need to know somebody cares.”
Nichole urged her elected officials to make no cuts to housing and fund more affordable housing and more programs like Family Promise to help end homelessness.
Nichole believes that in order for someone experiencing homelessness to be able to transition back into permanent affordable housing they need more help than just access to affordable housing. Nichole believes all homeless people need the same support that Family Promise gave her.
To read more about Nichole’s experiences with homelessness click here to learn more about her book Letters From God: A Collection of Letters Revealing the Heart of God.