LGBTQ affordable housing project for homeless planned in Newark

Outdoors during COVID-19 at RAIN Foundation
Outdoors during COVID-19 at RAIN Foundation. File photo courtesy of RAIN Foundation Facebook page

RAIN Foundation will help create more housing options in North Jersey

The new housing for the LGBTQ community is The Reaching Adolescents in Need (RAIN) Foundation’s first affordable and inclusive LGBTQ housing development. The building will house 11 homeless individuals who identify as LGBTQ and may have a disability.

RAIN Foundation logo 2020
RAIN Foundation logo 2020

The project is being supported by Monarch Housing, a non-profit in housing development for low-income LGBTQ young adults. LGBTQ activists and allies will speak at the groundbreaking today along with Ras Baraka, mayor of Newark, the host city.

The building will address the needs of underserved, chronically homeless LGBTQ young adults and those with disabilities said a RAIN Foundation press release. “The units will provide safe, affordable, and supportive housing, allowing residents to become independent and self-sufficient said the release.

Residents will receive supportive services from the RAIN Foundation and its partners to address their health, financial and psychosocial needs. The apartment building will be addressing a tremendous need, which is the need for permanent affordable housing.

“Homelessness in the LGBTQ community is often too prevalent but everyone in our society, regardless of sexual orientation, deserves a safe and affordable place to call home,” said U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.). “I applaud the LGBT RAIN Foundation for building a safe place for LGBTQ individuals to live and receive quality health and financial services. It’s through federal, state, local and private partnerships that important projects, like this one, which can transform lives, are possible.”

The RAIN Foundation provides emergency shelter, transitional housing and services to LGBTQ young adults ages 18-26

RAIN Foundation said the project is a first-of-its-kind in the tri-state area and is is an effort to show LGBTQ individuals that their lives are valued and celebrated. “It is a space for people to live without the fear of discrimination that too frequently occurs in housing,” said the statement.

“I am pleased to congratulate the LGBT RAIN Foundation and the founder and executive director, Elaine Helms, on opening another supportive housing location in Newark,” said New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy. “For years, the RAIN Foundation has been committed to strengthening our community by providing support and shelter to adolescents who identify as LGBTQIA+. This new building will positively impact the lives of several currently homeless individuals by providing them with a safe, decent, affordable, and supportive home. As Governor, I commend the RAIN Foundation for its commitment to fighting the homelessness crisis that plagues our nation and for investing in our youth to enable them to live happy, healthy, and productive lives.”

The groundbreaking ceremony will begin at 9:30am at 25-27 Roseville Ave., Newark (at the corner of Sussex Avenue).

The Essex LGBT RAIN Foundation currently provides emergency shelter, transitional housing, and permanent supporting housing services to LGBTQ young adults ages 18-26. This project is the first of its scale for the RAIN Foundation, which has been operating in the Greater Newark area since 2013. The Essex LGBT RAIN Foundation is a 501(c)3 non profit that provides emergency shelter services to LGBTQ individuals experiencing crisis leading to homelessness.