Thanks to the efforts of Ward 5 School Committee member Marcony Almeida-Barros, Everett High School (EHS) has received a second grant to help students in need of housing assistance.
The Massachusetts Housing & Shelter Alliance (MHSA), a nonprofit public policy advocacy organization dedicated to ending homelessness, has presented EHS with a $25,000 grant to help target students who are homeless or at imminent risk of homelessness. This follows a similar grant negotiated last year in the amount of $30,000.
Almeida-Barros worked closely with MHSA officials and Assistant Superintendent of Schools Charles Obremski to extend the successful program, which will be administered by the EHS Guidance Department.
“I was so happy to see that last year's grant had such positive outcomes for our neediest students,” Almeida-Barros said. “Last spring, I attended a special graduation ceremony for students at Youth Harbor, a non-profit organization that we're happy to partner with, who delivers these services to at-risk students, including EHS students helped by this program. Relieving the burdens of housing uncertainty allows students to focus on their studies and succeed.” The goals of the project are to help students achieve immediate housing stability and improved educational outcomes, including decreased absenteeism, improved school grades, and higher graduation rates.
This year's grant funds may be used to help students with rent, emergency housing, and food. “MHSA is grateful to be in a position to help the dedicated staff of the Everett School system in their innovative approach to end and prevent the homelessness of the young adults within their system," Joe Finn, President and Executive Director of MSHA, said about the grant. “Any young person helped is a success to us at MHSA.”
The renewed partnership between EHS and the MHSA was formally presented to the Everett School Committee at the regular meeting on Monday, November 4, 2019.