Bell Bridge Housing is a rehabilitative housing program which allows a longer-term option (up to one year for qualified candidates), providing more time for homeless families to hone basic living skills, getting them on track for successful independent living.
Qualifying participants must meet the definition of homelessness, have an income, not require a drug/alcohol treatment program or been convicted of a violent crime, and demonstrate a desire to accomplish goals they establish working with staff.
Individualized support services include budget counseling that encourages debt payment and savings, educational workshops, and referral services to other community agencies.
The Bridge Housing program utilizes eight apartment units in York City and two units (Next Step) on the third floor of Bell Family Shelter.
The Bell Bridge Housing Program is funded through the Department of Public Welfare/Housing Assistance Program to assist homeless families of York County in establishing permanent housing. The Bridge Children’s Program also receives funding from the United Way of York County.
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Bell’s Possibilities program is designed to empower young mothers with at-risk children to transcend previous life situations and circumstances and transition successfully into stable, permanent housing.
While living in one of the four York City apartments, participants will receive guidance in parenting, budgeting, and employment. Through individualized supports, families will be instilled with the vision and ability to transform their lives.
How does a family qualify?
The York County office of Children, Youth, and Families pre-screens families for participation in the program. Each family unit is headed by a young mothers whose children have been identified as at-risk.
How is Possibilities funded?
Funding to renovate the property on Philadelphia Street in downtown York, which housed Bell offices and programs until 1998, was provided through a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Operations are supported through York County Children, Youth, and Families, and community donations.
In partnership with York County Children, Youth & Families, the program is managed as part of Bell’s shelter services department, with a full-time on-site.
Questions about the Possibilities program may be directed to Christina Hines, program coordinator at 717-424-1962.