Kaiser Permanente of Hawaii has awarded grants totaling $160,000 to support 2 community organizations working to end homelessness in the state. The grants seek to reduce homelessness of Oahu’s most vulnerable communities, including veterans and people formerly incarcerated. According to the Honolulu Office of Housing, Oahu has an estimated 3,000 people experiencing homelessness in addition to 3,000 people being sheltered.
The Institute for Human Services received $75,000 to avert homelessness and recidivism for formerly incarcerated individuals reentering the community. Funding will provide affordable housing and support services to 40 individuals exiting the criminal justice system in Honolulu County.
Kaiser Permanente also awarded $85,000 to U.S. VETS Hawaii, an organization dedicated to ending veteran homelessness in the United States. The grant will enable the organization to provide a full-time on-site nurse at U.S. VETS’ Barbers Point at Kapolei and Waianae locations to provide preventive care, intervention, crisis management, and COVID-19 response services for clients as they work toward attaining stable, secure, and affordable housing. It will also fund a series of trainings for staff to better address clients’ health care needs.
“Mortality rates among people experiencing chronic homelessness are 3 to 4 times higher than that of the general population,” said Greg Christian, Hawaii Market president, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals. “Access to affordable housing is intrinsically tied to one’s health and well-being. That’s why addressing housing insecurity is a critical part of our mission to improve the health of the communities we serve. We’re proud to support IHS and U.S. VETS Hawaii on these projects because everyone has the right to good health and safe housing.”
Ending homelessness is a core piece of Kaiser Permanente’s work to address social health within its communities. In 2021, the health care organization invested more than $720,000 toward housing-related programs in Hawaii.
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve approximately 12.5 million members in 8 states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists, and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery, and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education, and the support of community health.