MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers, together with Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) CEO and Executive Director Elmer Moore Jr., announced today that 54 organizations will receive $2 million in grants from the WHEDA Foundation to provide emergency shelter, transitional residences, and extremely low-income housing.
“Ensuring individuals have safe housing is essential to the health, wellness, and success of our kids and families, workers, and communities,” said Gov. Evers. “Everywhere we go, we hear about the need for reliable, affordable housing, and WHEDA and our state’s nonprofit housing partners have been critical to advancing this important work, especially for Wisconsinites who might need additional support. I was proud to provide additional support for these grants so we can continue to work together to create housing opportunities that help families and communities thrive.”
This year, the Foundation’s annual Housing Grant Program is funded by $1 million from WHEDA reserves and an additional $1 million that was provided by Gov. Evers using American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding. WHEDA received 94 applications requesting more than $3.6 million through the housing grant process this year, an indication of the high demand and need in Wisconsin. According to WHEDA, this year’s $2 million in grants will create or improve 1,764 beds and housing units across the state. The investments at the community level also support economic recovery by creating valued construction jobs.
“As it has for the last 38 years, the WHEDA Foundation Housing Grant Program expands the supply of safe, affordable housing for people facing housing instability,” said WHEDA CEO and Executive Director Moore. “We are thankful to the governor for providing the resources to fund 20 additional applications and add 899 more beds than last year.”
Providers in 29 counties received awards ranging from $2,500 to $50,000, the maximum award available. Notably, applications were submitted by two Tribal Nations, the Bad River Housing Authority and the Lac Court Oreilles Band of the Lake Superior Chippewa Indians. Both Nations received awards.
Administered by WHEDA, the WHEDA Foundation grants improve housing for community members with complex needs, including individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, people experiencing intimate partner violence, individuals with incomes at or below 30 percent of the area median income, youth experiencing homelessness, and people with mental and behavioral health conditions.
Including this year, the WHEDA Foundation has issued 1,286 awards totaling nearly $29 million to housing providers across the state since 1985. Established by WHEDA in 1983, the Foundation is responsible for receiving and administering housing grant funds on behalf of WHEDA. Grants are awarded in one of two categories: emergency/transitional housing or permanent housing.
Organizations receiving the grants include nonprofit agencies, local governments, and Tribal authorities serving low-income or disadvantaged populations, including individuals experiencing homelessness, runaways, youth in out-of-home placement, individuals struggling with substance use disorder, people in need of protective services, aging and older residents, and people living with HIV, among others.
A complete list of the 2022 grant award recipients and their projects is available here.