Announcement: FY2016 COC Grant Application Materials Submitted



The FY2016 COC Consolidated Grant Application and Priority Listing were submitted to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) on September 12, 2016. Please see the two links below to view those submissions. The Consolidated Grant Application document includes information on the 21 renewal and bonus applications submitted to HUD. The Priority Listing document then breaks down each of the 21 applications by Tier 1 and 2 Priority, having already been ranked and scored by members of the CoC Governance Commission.


Applications, Ranking & Scoring: A Community Grant Update

By Robbie Conrad & Dawn Gilman


It’s been a busy time as the past two months have involved multiple application submissions, ranking, scoring, and more for a large number of grants. It is easy to get overwhelmed by where we are in the process of each grant. This Community Grant Update provides clarity on the grant cycles currently being worked through, as well as the status of where we are as a community for each grant.

Department of Children and Families (DCF) Grants

  • There are three grants through the Department of Children and Families for which the community is currently in various stages of the application process: the Challenge Grant, the Emergency Services Grant (ESG), and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). All applications are submitted to Changing Homelessness, who in turn presents an application to DCF as it is the only eligible applicant according to DCF policies.


  • The ESG State grant applications were received by Changing Homelessness from four agencies: Barnabas, Community Connections, Micah’s Place, and Salvation Army. This grant is for Clay and Nassau counties only. The Grant Review Team met in mid-May 2016 for ranking and scoring of the applications. On the team were both Lili High and Sabrina Cluesman. Changing Homelessness submitted the overall application to DCF on June 6, 2016, and the community has been preliminarily awarded.


  • The TANF grant application window opened in June 2016 with the goal of selecting one agency to receive DCF funds in the amount of $70,000. The application was submitted to DCF by Changing Homelessness on June 30, 2016 after the Grant Review Team determined Catholic Charities was ranked and scored the highest out of all three applicants. The team was made up of Carl Falconer, Joe Johnson, Larry Gonzales and John Wright. The Catholic Charities application was designed for projects not just involving emergency assistance for clients, but for food, connection to benefits and referrals to workforce development for employment opportunities. Our community has not received a preliminary TANF award as of this time.


  • The Challenge grant applications were submitted to Changing Homelessness on July 26. The ranking and scoring by the Grant Review Team took place on August 1. The team was comprised of Teri Ketchum and Carl Falconer. The six applications from Ability Housing, Barnabas, CHI (Diversion Program – Sulzbacher and MHRC), JASMYN, Salvation Army and Mental Health America were all approved, with minor revisions to meet the $300,000 budget. The application to the state was submitted by Changing Homelessness on August 9th and the anticipated date to post notice of grants awarded by the State is September 2, 2016. When more information is available, it will be immediately provided to the community.



  • The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) is a grant run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The grant monies for this program were specifically allocated by Congress for agency projects ranging from funding mass shelters to providing meal services to clients. In total, Duval County was allotted $461,437, which includes administrative costs.


  • The ranking and scoring of the twelve applications received was completed in mid-August and the agencies’ revised applications are due back on Thursday, August 18th. The applications will then be submitted collectively to FEMA by Changing Homelessness, as the agency is the designated lead for submissions.


Continuum of Care (CoC) Grant

  • The Continuum of Care (CoC) grant is an annual competitive grant administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Locally, Changing Homelessness is the universal applicant, responsible for the preparation and submission of the grant.


  • The project review team will meet on Wednesday, August 24th to rank and review 22 project submissions for the community. The full application to HUD will be available on the Changing Homelessness website by September 14th.



To learn more about grants and funding opportunities, visit

Local Leaders Share Expertise at National Conference to End Homelessness

By Ywana Allen

Presentations at the 2016 National Conference on Ending Homelessness included the expertise of several local leaders, working to end homelessness in our community.

Carl Falconer, Regional Director – SOAR and Housing Initiatives for Lutheran Services Florida Health Systems (LSFHS) delivered “How to Form CoC Governance that Gets Results.” As the managing entity for substance abuse and mental health funding, LSFHS oversees state funding management and monitoring in over 23 counties and seven CoCs, including Jacksonville, Daytona Beach and Gainesville. Among key takeaways, the importance of having knowledgeable and strong leadership on CoC governing boards, showing and using data to drive decision making, and embracing change even when difficult, were emphasized. Falconer also recommended that having specific and measurable goals, advocating with other funding agencies, and engaging in discussions as instrumental for yielding results.

Dawn Gilman, CEO for Changing Homelessness, facilitated a “Masterclass on Coordinated Intake” highlighting the importance of having systems and processes in place that when coupled with consistency, can maximize coordinated intake. She shared current system features including the importance of knowing assessment and intake data, developing accurate record keeping practices including documentation for programs and a comprehensive master list, and the benefits of having mobile units in addition to an office. Challenges shared included shelters not taking referrals or being a part of HMIS, the length of time between referrals and housing placement, and the severely mentally ill and young transgender persons not fitting within the parameters of the assessment tool. Evidence of the impact of coordinated intake has been a drop in average community acuity, and that it drives planning, decision making and organizational direction.

Shawn Liu, HUD-VASH Program Manager for the North Florida & South Georgia Veterans Health System, presented “Partnering with Your Local VA.” To build solid and sustainable partnerships, he recommended learning who your partners are, including names, roles and chain of command, and understanding their unique wants, needs and goals. Building relationships is key, and he encouraged those considering partnerships to think about and discuss performance measures, clinician needs, risks, issues, values, the importance of data and 1-click solutions. Ultimately, partners should be working collaboratively to generate a return on investment for every Veteran.

To learn how you can attend the 2017 National Alliance to End Homelessness Conference, visit their website at

Cofer and Fullwood Winners in Primary Election

By Ywana Allen

Charlie Cofer and Reggie Fullwood, two of the candidates who participated in our general membership meeting earlier this month, are winners in the August 30th primary election.

Retired Judge Charlie Cofer earned 118,219 votes, defeating incumbent Matt Shirk who earned 35,353 votes to now serve as Public Defender for the 4th Judicial Circuit. In November, no Democrat or other candidate will appear on the general election ballot, but a write-in candidate kept the primary closed to Republican voters. During the meeting, Mr. Cofer shared his experience in handling cases involving many of our city’s homeless residents and emphasized the importance of stakeholder collaboration and building relationships as essential for ending homelessness. He also explained how working closely with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office is important and that working downtown for many years has enabled him to see the face of homelessness.

Incumbent Reggie Fullwood earned 45% of the Democratic vote, a total of 6,469, and will now face Republican candidate Pastor Mark Griffin in November. Mr. Fullwood shared that his commitment to ending homelessness stems in part from his own experience of poverty as a child, which he believes, better equips him to understand the issues related to homelessness. He also explained why he has been an advocate for legislation, leading the charge for several bills in Tallahassee, and stressed the importance of an acceptable living wage and mental health services. He emphasized that in order to resolve funding issues, actions must be agency-driven to ensure there is one voice and that policy must be pushed so that programs are expanded to include the most vulnerable populations.

To learn more about all of the primary winners, visit

Changing Homelessness Pic for Blog August 15

Legislation and Funding Top Priorities in Upcoming Election

By Ywana Allen

Several candidates in the upcoming Northeast Florida primary election joined member agencies at the monthly general membership meeting on Thursday August 11th at First United Methodist Church as members posed vital questions about the priority and allocation of state and federal funding, and the need for better mental healthcare in the community. In attendance were Leslie Jean-Bart, Candidate for State Representative – District 14, David Bruderly, Candidate for U.S. Representative – District 4, Charlie Cofer, Candidate for Public Defender – 4th Judicial Circuit, Reggie Fullwood, Incumbent Candidate for State Representative – District 13, Lashonda L.J. Holloway, Candidate for U.S. Representative – District 5, and Gracie Bell McCastler, Candidate for State Representative – District 14.

  • Candidate Jean-Bart acknowledged that money is often tight and waiting lists add to frustration of member agencies. Solutions are identified but resources are needed, which she’ll support if elected.


  • Candidate Bruderly expressed that issues of criminal justice, like drugs, at federal level, put homeless issues back on front burner.


  • Candidate Cofer stressed that coordination between stakeholders to find solutions is ideal and attainable with relationships and the attitudes necessary to tackle homelessness.


  • Candidate Fullwood stated that in order to end homelessness, having one voice is ideal, advocacy is important, and establishing relationships with legislators is essential.


  • Candidate Holloway emphasized that a government is only as strong as its people. Engagement in the process and advocacy are important as well as healthcare, housing and criminal justice reform.


  • Candidate McCastler stated that the key is to advocate and appropriate more funds for the homeless and to educate law enforcement on the issue.

A community health update on mosquito-borne illnesses was also presented by Haley Zachary, Surveillance Epidemiologist for the Florida Department of Health in Duval County. According to Zachary, August and September are peak months for mosquito-borne illnesses. The homeless are at a greater risk due to more time being spent outdoors compared to other segments of the population, and wipes and sprays are the best defense for prevention.

Resources & Media

Early voting takes place August 15th – 28th and primary election day is August 30th. For info visit the Duval County Supervisor of Elections website at For info about mosquito-borne illnesses or to request a presentation for your organization, contact Charles Griggs, Director of External Affairs for the Florida Department of Health in Duval County at 904-253-1004 or Media coverage from the meeting can be found at