COVID-19 UPDATE

The need arose and you responded—with heartfelt thanks to you for your ongoing efforts to ensure that amid a national health crisis our state’s most vulnerable citizens were in safe, decent, and affordable housing to help prevent the spread of COVID. We still have much work to do as we continue our efforts to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and other infectious diseases among persons or families who are homeless or receiving homeless assistance. With your partnership, the dark days of this pandemic will become a little brighter.

ARCH Receives $1.25 Million from Bezos Day 1 Families Fund Grant

November 17, 2021

Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless, Inc. Receives $1.25 Million Bezos Day 1 Families Fund Grant to Help End Homelessness for Families in Rural Alabama 

Day 1 Families Fund grants $96.2 million to 32 nonprofits across the country to provide shelter for children and families in need 

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – (November 17, 2021): The Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless, Inc. (ARCH), a nonprofit organization committed to preventing and ending homelessness in rural Alabama, today announced that it has been selected to receive a $1.25 million grant from the Bezos Day 1 Families Fund—the largest privately funded grant in ARCH’s history. Launched in 2018 by Amazon founder and executive chair Jeff Bezos, the Day 1 Families Fund issues annual leadership awards to organizations and civic groups doing compassionate, needle-moving work to provide shelter and hunger support to address the immediate needs of young families. 

“This is a monumental moment for ARCH and certainly a triumphant success for me as its Executive Director,” said ARCH Executive Director Felicia Jackson. “I’m honored as a female and as a minority to have been hand-selected and recognized by national leaders and advocates within the housing arena. The grant from the Bezos Day 1 Families Fund will advance our work in ensuring our state’s most vulnerable families are sheltered and safely housed for the long term.” 

This one-time grant will allow ARCH to regrant through a vetting process the majority of the funds to local agencies to expand shelter, rapid rehousing, homelessness prevention and other effective and essential services. Subsequently, ARCH will use part of the funds to continue its collaborative approach to plan essential services and resources that involve the broader work of ending homelessness. 

Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless was selected as a Day 1 Families Fund grant recipient by an independent advisory board comprised of homelessness experts with experience in policy, advocacy, racial equity, child welfare and housing and service delivery, as well as firsthand experience in homelessness. 

This year, the Day 1 Families Fund issued a total of $96.2 million in grants to 32 organizations across the country. The 2021 Day 1 Families Fund grant recipients are: ACLAMO; Adopt-A-Family of the Palm Beaches; Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless, Inc.; All Chicago Making Homelessness History; AACI (Asian Americans for Community Involvement); Building Changes and Africatown International; Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Santa Rosa; Colorado Coalition for the Homeless; Covenant House Alaska; Destination: Home; Doorways; Family Life Center; Family Service League; Friends of the Family; Homeless Action Network of Detroit; Homeward; LifeMoves; Lubbock Open Door; Mesilla Valley Community of Hope; Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter & Services; Mississippi United to End Homelessness; Newcap, Inc.; Orange County Asian and Pacific Islander Community Alliance (OCAPICA); Portland Homeless Family Solutions; Project Community Connections, Inc.; Rural Alaska Community Action 

Program (RurAL CAP); Sacramento Steps Forward; SHELTER, Inc.; Texas Homeless Network; The Link; Tri- County Community Action Agency, Inc.; and Union Station Homeless Services. 

“My two children and I were homeless after an eviction caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. We were hopeless, literally sleeping in our vehicle,” said L. Martrep, a client of the organization. “We reached out to ARCH for help. They provided emergency shelter for a few weeks, assisted us in obtaining permanent housing and connected us to community partners for other services. The ARCH program saved my life during a time when I was at my lowest. The director, Mrs. Jackson, reached out to me personally to ensure that my family received the necessary help and offered encouragement during a dark time in our lives. Because of ARCH, the financial help provided and its caring leader, we now have a place to call home.” 

The Bezos Day One Fund made a $2 billion commitment to focus on making meaningful and lasting impacts in two areas: funding existing non-profits that help families experiencing homelessness, and creating a network of new, non-profit tier-one preschools in low-income communities. The Day 1 Families Fund issues annual leadership awards to organizations and civic groups doing compassionate, needle-moving work to provide shelter and hunger support to address the immediate needs of young families. Since 2018, the Day 1 Families Fund has issued 130 grants totaling more than $398 million to organizations around the country working to combat homelessness and help families gain housing support and stability. The vision statement comes from the inspiring Mary’s Place in Seattle: no child sleeps outside. For more information, visit www.BezosDayOneFund.org/Day1FamiliesFund

About Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless 

The Alabama Rural Coalition for the Homeless (ARCH) is a nonprofit organization that facilitates a coordinated effort of planning, delivery, and evaluation to link families to resources to prevent and end homelessness. Further, ARCH seeks to increase housing stability by advocating for safe, decent, affordable housing in 42 rural Alabama counties. ARCH provides these much-needed services throughout the rural region, which has been typically underserved. 

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