|| The mission of Housing Families First is to provide families experiencing homelessness with the tools to achieve housing stability. Founded in 2000 as Hilliard House, our organization offers safe, supportive shelter for families. But, we do much more. Quickly stabilizing families in permanent housing is our top priority. We carry out our mission through four programs. Our emergency shelter, commonly known as Hilliard House, gets families off the street and offers housing-focused services to help them access the best permanent housing options available. Providing a temporary home for over 200 children and adults each year, our shelter is the largest family shelter in Greater Richmond and is the only fully handicapped-accessible shelter for families.
Our Building Neighbors rapid re-housing program moves literally homeless families and single women – staying in our own shelter, other local shelters, and the streets – into safe, affordable homes. Then, our case management team works with families to connect them with community resources that help them keep their housing, increase income, cope with stress, and achieve long-term housing stability.
Our newest program is Bringing Families Home, a partnership with Richmond Public Schools and Henrico County Public Schools, to provide students and families facing homelessness with permanent homes, leased in their own name. Stable housing provides a foundation on which students can build academic success and graduate on time.
The fourth program is a partnership through the regional Homeless Crisis Line, which is operated in collaboration with four other nonprofits. The goal of the Homeless Crisis Line is to help families draw on their own support system to re-stabilize their housing, when possible, and to gather information for referral to homeless services, if needed.