Tarrant County Homeless Coalition receives $2.5 million Bezos grant to help families 

dfwnewsa | November 21, 2023 | 0 | Dallas News , Fort Worth , Fort Worth News

Tarrant County Homeless Coalition receives .5 million Bezos grant to help families 

Backpacks are hung on the side of beds that house families experiencing homelessness in the Salvation Army shelter Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2023, in Fort Worth. The shelter is set for renovations as homelessness in Tarrant County is at an all-time high. (Yfat Yossifor | KERA)

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The Tarrant County Homeless Coalition received a $2.5 million grant from the Bezos Day One Families Fund Grant, the largest private gift in the organization’s history. 

The coalition is one of 38 nonprofits nationwide to receive money to reduce family homelessness, which is currently at an all-time high in Tarrant County. The one-time grant will be used toward the agency’s diversion efforts, housing navigation and support services for families experiencing homelessness, according to a news release. 

“This gift from Bezos Day One Families Fund is transformational for our organization and will have an incredible impact on our community,” said Lauren King, executive director of the Homeless Coalition, in a statement. “This funding comes at a critical time when more families than ever are experiencing homelessness in our community, and as we look for more innovative ways to meet those increased needs.”

Tarrant County Homeless Coalition has seen 318 families become homeless in 2023, a major increase from previous years. Nationally, children and adults in families experiencing homelessness represent more than a quarter of the homeless population. 

According to the agency, this is the largest single private grant gifted to the coalition and will help tackle some projects that previously were not feasible due to a lack of resources. This awarded grant will supplement the $50 million in capital funding already secured from local municipalities to build housing for people exiting homelessness. 

The Bezos Day One Families Fund Grant was launched in 2018 with a $2 billion commitment to funding existing nonprofits that help families experiencing homelessness and creating a network of new nonprofit tier-one preschools in low-income communities. 

A preschool location is being considered in a south Fort Worth apartment complex.

In January, the homeless coalition will put out a request for proposals to find partners to work on diversion, housing navigation and support services for families. The RFP is expected to be awarded in February. 

More information about the process will be posted on the Funding Opportunities section of the homeless coalition’s website. 

Sandra Sadek is a Report for America corps member, covering growth for the Fort Worth Report. You can contact her at sandra.sadek@fortworthreport.org or on Twitter @ssadek19At the Fort Worth Report, news decisions are made independently of our board members and financial supporters. Read more about our editorial independence policy here.

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