Achievement and Acclaim for Bridge Housing in North Carolina
October 5, 2022
RHD North Carolina opened three successful and innovative programs in 2021. One of those programs, a Bridge Housing program in Cumberland County, recently received commendation from local government and garnered attention from local TV news.
Kelsey and Shannon Battle of All American Construction and Restoration have been rebuilding and renovating blocks of homes in Fayetteville, NC, helping to improve and beautify an area that has struggled with homelessness and drugs.
RHD North Carolina partnered with the Battles through Alliance Health, a NC-based managed care organization. Program Director, Nicholas Hobbs, explains, “Alliance approached us and said, ‘There’s a substantial underserved homeless population in Cumberland County. Would RHD be interested in providing services there?’ Someone at Alliance knew that the Battles were renovating this neighborhood. So, we went and looked at the houses, and came to an agreement with the Battles that’s a win-win for everybody.”
Hobbs adds, “The Bridge Housing model is simple and clean to operate, and it adds such a huge value. The staff in Fayetteville is doing a tremendous job.”
Bridge Housing programs are designed to help participants secure permanent housing. Through the program, participants can also receive medical, dental, and mental health care, secure entitlements and benefits, and acquire knowledge and skills, among other services.
The results of this partnership were amazing. Not only did RHD North Carolina lease an entire street of homes for their Bridge Housing program, staff also made invaluable connections with people who needed chance to rebuild their lives while pursuing their dream of permanent housing. Within a few months, every house on that street had someone living in it.
Cumberland County Bridge Housing consists of six homes, five of which are three-bedroom homes for participant living. In each home, each participant has their own private bedroom, as well as a shared full kitchen and living room space. Participants can stay in these homes for up to five months while they gain the necessary skills to move to a more independent, long-term housing option of their choice.
On September 14, 2022, Councilwoman Shakeyla M. Ingram held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Battle Family and the Bridge Housing homes. That same day, ABC11 in Raleigh-Durham profiled the Battles.
“The Battles want to continue to revitalize the neighborhood. They’re continuing to buy up properties,” Hobbs says. “There’s going to be good opportunity to acquire more properties, hire more staff, and offer services to a larger volume of people down there.” That opportunity will in turn give many more people the chance to participate in Bridge Housing, a program that will help them change and save their own lives.