SEVCA’s new Housing Resource Center (HRC) in Brattleboro opened in June in an adjoining space to SEVCA’s Family Services office at 15 Grove Street. Equipped with computers, copier, and furniture (in large part due to local donations), the HRC now opens its doors during selected hours weekly to all Brattleboro-area households searching for housing, particularly low-cost or subsidized housing. We expect it will be used extensively by SEVCA’s clients as well as those working with other agencies serving low-income clients.
Activities at the HRC will educate and empower clients with a holistic knowledge of local and state housing resources. Visitors can use the computers, browse housing listings, receive help to fill out applications for housing, and access other materials about community resources and public benefits programs for which they may be eligible.
The space will also periodically host the 4-session “How To Be A Successful Renter” tenant education program. SEVCA has strong relationships with area landlords, who have shown that they are much more willing to rent to a tenant with a poor rental history when they are able to show they’ve completed a tenant education program and achieved a certificate. We also expect to provide SEVCA’s 7-session Financial Fitness course at this location periodically throughout the year.
We envisage the HRC to be a critical component of the effort by the Brattleboro-area Continuum of Care to reduce homelessness. SEVCA will recruit and train volunteers to help run the center; we plan to offer volunteer opportunities to homeless and formerly-homeless individuals, among others. For more information, or to volunteer at the Housing Resource Center, please call 579-1314 x102.