Clarksville, Tenn. — Centerstone, Middle Tennessee’s leading provider of behavioral health services, has been awarded a five-year grant for $2 million by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
The grant provides funding for an intensive, community-based mental health and substance abuse treatment program to serve the homeless in Clarksville. It will be offered at the Old Firehouse Day Shelter building upon longstanding efforts of the Clarksville Homeless Coalition.
The grant was announced at a press conference today at Mayor Don Trotter’s office. Also in attendance were Philip Mangano, executive director of the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, and representatives from Centerstone and the Clarksville Homeless Coalition.
“Centerstone is committed to improving services to the chronically homeless population in the Clarksville community,” said David Guth, CEO of Centerstone. “With this federal grant, we will be able to provide people who are not currently being served with a level and continuity of care that will help prepare them to lead more independent, productive lives.”
National and local surveys indicate that out of 135,000 Clarksville residents at least 1,000 are homeless and 2,200 are at risk of homelessness each year.
Working in partnership with other community service providers through the Homeless Coalition, Centerstone will be able to improve services available to the homeless population in the community. The grant requires Centerstone to track outcomes and demonstrate measurable results on behalf of participants in the following areas:
- Securing housing
- Increasing employment
- Reducing use of alcohol or other drugs
- Reducing symptoms of mental illness
- Reducing emergency room and hospital utilization costs
Centerstone is one of 34 organizations nationwide to receive a grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the Treatment for the Homeless Projects program. The grants were distributed to providers that “enable communities to expand and strengthen treatment services for homeless individuals with substance abuse disorders, mental illness or co-occurring substance abuse and mental illness,” according to the department.