Author Archives: admin

03.31.20

Jericho Book Club: Young Adult and LGBTQ+

As we collectively begin to practice social distancing, it is important for us find ways of maintaining our sense of community. It is also a great time for us to all to spend more time reading content that will broaden our perspective and take us away from the daily onslaught of health related news. With that in mind, we have created the Jericho Book Club. Each week, we will be posting a new list of books from which to choose, and each week’s list will have a unique theme. Our hopes are that we are able to offer a reprieve from daily life while at the same time increase our understanding of the clients we serve and the issues they face. This is one such way. We hope you enjoy. Continue reading

03.23.20

Jericho Book Club: Homelessness

As we collectively begin to practice social distancing, it is important for us find ways of maintaining our sense of community. It is also a great time for us to all to spend more time reading content that will broaden our perspective and take us away from the daily onslaught of health related news. With that in mind, we have created the Jericho Book Club. Each week, we will be posting a new list of books from which to choose, and each week’s list will have a unique theme. Our hopes are that we are able to offer a reprieve from daily life while at the same time increase our understanding of the clients we serve and the issues they face. This is one such way. We hope you enjoy.

Continue reading

02.12.20

Jericho Project Receives $2.2 Million in VA Grants to Combat Veterans Homelessness

Combination of grants provide vets with vital funds and counseling to get housed and prevent homelessness

 New York, NY November 5 – Jericho Project, a nationally-acclaimed nonprofit ending homeless at its roots, has won a two-year $2-million grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to launch a new program to reduce homelessness among veterans and their families across the five boroughs of New York City.

The grant is part of the VA’s Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program. It will enable Jericho to fast-track more veterans to housing, providing them with both the financial support – 35% of the cost of their housing for two years – as well as the vital connections to a network of landlords who are proud to offer affordable, clean and safe housing to veterans and their families.

“Many Veterans face an increasingly challenging housing market with rents rising faster than the wages of low-income families. Offering a fixed rental subsidy for two years brings the cost of more units into reach, expanding the affordable housing supply. This subsidy, coupled with a strong partnership with the Department of Labor’s employment programs such as the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program, may give Veterans the time they need to increase their income so they are no longer severely rent burdened – and escape the continued specter of homelessness,” said John Kuhn, Director of the SSVF program, VA’s homelessness prevention and rapid re-housing initiative.

At the same time, Jericho received a separate grant from the VA for $200,000for the Grant and Per Diem (GPD) Case Management Program. . This program allows the nonprofit to provide a dedicated Case Manager to work closely with veterans as they move from homelessness into independent housing in the community. The Case Manager helps the formerly homeless veterans become more stable in their new apartments and access the employment, health and social support systems they need to sustain their housing.  Crucially, this includes regular meetings for six months to ensure that the veteran has the resources to resume civilian life with dignity.

“These generous grants from the VA will not only close the gap between a veteran’s stability and homelessness, but it will also allow them to prevent homelessness and build for the future,” said Jericho Project CEO Tori Lyon.

Jericho brings to this goal its expert team of professionals who work with trusted landlords to locate apartments suitable for the veteran’s location and family size, help negotiate the rental agreement, and provide additional employment or services enabling the veteran to prepare themselves to live independently within two years.

Jericho services 2,500 adults and families, to include some 750 veterans, every year. Of those veterans, Jericho’s SSVF program supports 475 low-income veterans and their families every year, with assistance either to prevent imminent homelessness or to rapidly re-house veterans who have recently become homeless. The SSVF program helps them to obtain housing and employment as quickly as possible.  This grant will enable them to serve an additional 90 veterans.

These new programs are part of Jericho’s groundbreaking Veterans Initiative first launched in 2007 that would result in the nonprofit designing and building three state-of-the-art LEED-certified Veterans Residences in the Bronx:  Kingsbridge Terrace, Fordham Village and the newest residence Walton House.

There veterans from all eras pay a third of their income for their own lease and key to an affordable studio apartment with access to their case manager and other support services from employment and mental health on site and through Jericho’s network of providers. With studio apartments, community and computer rooms, gyms and gardens, veterans can access the specific counseling they need – whether they are coping with substance abuse or Post Traumatic Stress, seeking education and jobs, or reuniting with their families.

Additionally, the Jericho Veteran Employment Program (JVEP) helps veterans without a secure income to gain employment to prevent their homelessness.

05.06.18

Gardening Day at Walton House

It was a great spring day in the Bronx.

Volunteers from Neuberger Berman participated in a day of gardening at our Walton House residence. Neuberger Berman employees, Jericho’s staff and residents enjoyed a day of planting the first flowers in the new development which will open this summer. Walton House will be the new home of formerly homeless and low-income veterans and young adults.

Thank you Neuberger Berman for helping Jericho provide a safe, peaceful, and beautiful environment for our residents to enjoy! The flowers will bloom with the lives of our new residents!

Click here to check out some pics of our volunteers in action!

01.24.18

Jericho Opens Veterans Resource Center in Ozone Park

[Originally published in Queens Ledger]

by Jennifer Khedaroo
Jan 23, 2018

 

Jericho Project opened its first Queens-based Veterans Resource Center in Ozone Park last Friday.

The 35-year-old nonprofit organization’s original mission was to fight homelessness. In 2006, the group started the Veterans Initiative, which now serves 750 veterans annually.

The initiative includes two state-of-the-art residences for veterans in the Bronx, housing placement, and employment services, as well as developing programs for eviction prevention and legal assistance.

CEO Tori Lyon met Councilman Eric Ulrich three years ago. Since then, Ulrich has allocated over $400,000 to Jericho Project’s efforts through the City Council’s Veterans Fund.

Ulrich connected Jericho Project to the a local chapter of the Knights of Columbus, and the two organizations were able to create an office space within the hall.

“If a veteran is getting evicted, or if a veteran is homeless or about to be homeless, we can help them find an apartment and even help them pay their rent with financial assistance,” Lyon said. “We have a lot of connections with employers who are interested in hiring veterans, and we work very individually with the veterans to find something that works with their goals and what they like to do.”

Jericho Project career counselor and Air Force veteran Tony Rivera helps veterans prepare resumes and conducts mock job interviews.

“I can’t guarantee veterans a job, but one thing I can do is assist them with preparation for employment and making them job ready,” he said. “When you’re being interviewed, it can be brutal, so I’ll help them learn how to address some of these questions with techniques rather than go in and get blindsided.”

Once Rivera and the veteran completes the resume, he sends it to Jericho Project’s employment specialist, who will then contact “veteran-friendly” local employers. He also encourages the veterans to send out resumes on their own.

“With you doing your part and us doing our part, chances are that someone will call you,” Rivera said.

Kimberlin Vasquez, an employment specialist with the group, said that local employers include property managers, retailers, startups in Brooklyn and seven different security guard companies, such as Watch Guard 24/7 in Middle Village.

“It all depends on the veterans and what skill set they bring,” she said. “We have a vast network of community boards where we can reach out to employers to present the skill set our veterans bring in.”

For older veterans, there are also stipend-based opportunities for those who are just looking for part-time work.

Jericho Project invited community members to the Veterans Resource Center’s open house last Friday. The center’s two staffers have already visited local homeless shelters, job centers, American Legion posts and VFW halls to get the word out.

“The plan is to help veterans and help get them out of homeless shelters and off the street,” said outreach coordinator George Mills. “We’re trying to make it a one-stop shop. If they need VA assistance, I’d get them into the VA, and there’s a psychiatric staff from NYU that’s available for post-traumatic stress.”

The new Veterans Resource Center at 135-45 Lefferts Boulevard will be open, for now, on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. According to Mills, their availability will expand if they see there is the need for their services.

“We have a wide array of services and Queens is very underserved in veteran services, so we are definitely happy to have a presence here,” Lyon said.

Read more: Queens Ledger – Veterans Resource Center opens in Ozone Park

12.13.17

‘Day of Action’ Brings Holidays to Veterans and the Needy

Originally published in This is the Bronx.

By Melanie Correa

December 10, 2017

On Friday hundreds of volunteers across eight locations in the Bronx and Harlem gathered for a Day of Action Against Homelessness.  They pitched in on toy and clothing drives and decorated for the holidays to help veterans and vulnerable New Yorkers have a better holiday.

Volunteers put up Christmas decorations for Day of Action (Melanie Correa)

At the Kingsbridge Terrace Veterans Residence Tori Lyon, the CEO of the Jericho Project that serves veterans there with supportive housing and comprehensive counseling, says that this activity is merely an extention of what goes on daily.

“This is their home and we’re beautifying it for the holidays and spreading some holiday cheer,” she said.

Veteran Pat Wehl, who is a resident, echoed the sentiment.

“The thing about Jericho is that the key word is ‘supportive.’ The fact that they have events like this, that these people are here during Christmas time, says that they go out of their way.”

Ernst & Young, one of the corporate partners for the event, brought some of  their employees to help decorate the place.

EY Executive Director Joe McHugh said, “I think it’s important because it’s the holiday season.  It’s bringing people together and it enables them to feel the joy of the season. It’s giving back to the community and to an organization we’re passionate about.”

Pat Wehl and Darold Cox, Veterans at Kingsbridge Terrace (Melanie Correa)

When veterans walked into the community room, they were welcomed by Christmas music, red and green décor, board games and a beautiful Christmas Tree. There was a luncheon and gift-bags from the volunteers.

The occasion motivated Craig Hinds, a veteran who has lived at the Residence since 2012, to open up about his experience living amongst other veterans.

“I love it,” he said. “Veterans have a certain camaraderie with each other and it doesn’t matter what branch we’re from. We understand each other’s special needs, our PTSD issues, and we are able to relate to each other better than with other civilians so it’s great.”

This second annual Day of Action event had eight supporting partners, including Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo, and Viacom who pitched in with funding and volunteers personnel. Amazingly enough, the events in all the locations were being held at the same time.

“Our Day of Action will give New Yorkers a way to tackle the crisis of homelessness head-on and give back to our city,” Ms. Lyon said.

For more information on the project, or how to volunteer visit the Jericho Project.