Covenant House Missouri to Open Two New Households on Campus

May 15, 2021 in Press Releases, Special, Company News, Project News - Special, Project Announcements

Covenant House Missouri to open two new households on campus, helping young people and the community recover from the pandemic
Covenant House Missouri, located at 2727 N Kingshighway Blvd, is proud to announce the creation of two new households on their campus. The expansion will add 18 beds to their program operations for youth ages 16 to 24 who are experiencing homelessness.
In July of 2019, Covenant House Missouri launched a new strategic plan with four key priority areas: Grow Housing Opportunities, Expand Education and Employment, Develop Human Capital, and Increase Investments. In the first 18 months of the new plan, campus occupancy has grown from 30 to 40 young people a night. The build out of the two new households will increase campus occupancy from 40 to 58 youth per night, an almost 100% increase in housing capacity in two and half years.
In August 2020, at the height of the pandemic, the Board of Directors met to strategize on the best response to the surge in demand for supportive and residential services. The waitlist for housing services at Covenant House Missouri has more than doubled since the start of the pandemic, growing from 71 youth to 176 youth on the waitlist over the course of calendar year 2020. In line with the strategic plan and with the full support of the board, Covenant House identified that they had two unfinished spaces on campus that could be transformed to provide housing for more youth on their journey from homelessness to hope.
Jessica Erfling, Chief Executive Officer, states, “The pandemic has impacted vulnerable populations in our community from both a health and economic standpoint. Over the past year, we have learned just how connected housing security and health outcomes are. Covenant House Missouri feels called to do our part to help youth who are unhoused, unsheltered and at-risk in our community connect to a healthy, fulfilling future of stability, independence and success.”
Covenant House Missouri, as the only youth-serving organization on the City of St. Louis’s Continuum of Care, has a strong partnership with the Division of Homeless Services. The St. Louis City Continuum of Care is a membership organization comprised of more than 100 organizations and individuals from the private and public sector who work in partnership to prevent and end homelessness in the City of St. Louis.
Covenant House Missouri has secured $750,000 for the construction of the new households,
$599,713 of which has been awarded by the Division of Homeless Services. This funding was made available through the City of St. Louis Emergency Solutions Grants that were a part of the CARES act. “The City of St. Louis values the partnerships we have with organizations like Covenant House Missouri who help some of the most vulnerable people in our region. We are working together to distribute our resources equitably, and use one-time funding to create sustainable, supportive spaces that provide shelter and supportive wraparound services to our unhoused youth,” shares Mayor Tishaura Jones.
Impact Strategies has been retained to complete the construction. Included in this project will be a new10-person household for males and an 8-person household for females. The project is scheduled for completion in early fall, so more housing opportunities for youth will be available before our next winter season.
“Covenant House Missouri is a total solution for youth experiencing homelessness under one roof,” shares Board Chair, Jon Nienas. “The construction of the new households on our campus will convert every last inch of our 44,000 square foot campus into operable program space where all youth are welcomed with unconditional love, absolute respect and a place to call home.”
Covenant House Missouri will be focused on maintaining high impact outcomes for the additional youth they will be serving and on growing their annual operating budget from $4 million to $4.6 million to support the expanded operations. To learn more about Covenant House Missouri and ways to support, visit www.covenanthousemo.org/how-to-help.

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