Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. Tours Bridges Project Connect

Site Visit at Bridges Project Connect with Representative Donald Payne, Jr. was an Opportunity to Make the Case that Opportunity Starts at Home and Increased Federal Housing Funding is Critical

On December 17, 2018, U.S. Representative Donald Payne, Jr. (NJ-D-10) visited and toured Bridges Project Connect in Newark.

At Project Connect, professional case managers work with homeless clients individually to create an attainable set of goals that will lead to better health, and ultimately housing, a job and independence.

Bridges offers services that will lead to more consistent care and a healthier life, with the ultimate goal of housing and independence for our homeless friends.

Congressman Donald Payne, Jr. had the opportunity meet with Bridges Executive Director, Richard Uniacke, Project Connect Case Manager Jaleesa McEachin, and clients visiting Homeless Connect that morning for services. The clients told the Congressman about their own experiences with homelessness.

Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. Tours Bridges Project Connect in Newark
Richard Uniacke, Tyrone Cummings, Jaleesa McEachin, Theresa Pringle, Christian Spruill, Ricky Blue and Brian Anglin. Seated Theresa Pringle and Christian Spruill,

The Project Connect offices include:

  • case managers’ offices,
  • laundry facilities,
  • showers and
  • space for visiting healthcare from a local Federally Qualified Health Care Center that uses the space on Thursday mornings.

The tour with Congressman Payne provided the opportunity for Monarch Housing Staff, Bridges and Project Connect Staff and clients experiencing homelessness to ask for support of increased federal funding for affordable housing including Housing Choice Vouchers and expanding and strengthening the Tax Credit program.

Bridges and Project Connect have been instrumental in helping clients experiencing homelessness get the documentation including birth certificates and New Jersey state IDs that are needed to help get back to work and school and access benefits.

Bridges also uses Housing First vouchers to link clients experiencing homelessness to permanent housing. Clients of Project Connect have the opportunity to develop relationships and receive support from the committed case management staff.

At this time of year, and all year long, it is important for us to remember that Opportunity Starts at Home. Monarch Housing is a proud supporter of the Opportunity Starts at Home Campaign which operates with the vision that America’s low-income households have access to safe, decent, and stable affordable housing in neighborhoods where everyone has equitable opportunities to thrive.

The mission of the Opportunity Starts at Home Campaign is to build a national multi-sector movement which generates widespread support for federal policies that protect and expand affordable housing for low-income people.

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