The Community Health Clinic at CitySquare in Dallas, in partnership with Texas Health and Austin Street Center, started a twenty-four-month pilot program aimed at ending homelessness for some people in Dallas.
Dallas County is currently experiencing record numbers of homelessness. According to the Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance, 4,570 people were experiencing homelessness in Dallas and Collin Counties, with thirty-seven percent of the homeless for over three years.
Health to Home, a 24-month pilot program, is hoping to put a stop to the upward trend. The program is aimed at helping sick and injured people who are homeless get back on their feet.
Tikisa Jackson, Director of Community Health, revealed that it is “really challenging” for homeless people to recover on the street after going through surgery or illness. Thus, the program’s ultimate goal is to ensure they do not go back to the street.
“It is truly human of us to stop and to see when someone is hurting,” Jackson said.
The program would provide respite care, under the supervision of a doctor, nurse, and caseworker, to beneficiaries, after which they would receive temporary housing to help them recover and regain their independence.
Jason Mentzel, a beneficiary of the Health to Home program, said he would not have survived if the program had not come to his aid.
Mentzel, who had just lost his job and found himself homeless, got into an accident that left one of his legs badly injured. He was able to get the medical care he needed through the Health to Home program. Thanks to the program, he now lives in his own apartment.