The Action for Boston Community Development Mobile Homeless Outreach Team (MHOT), a program serving homeless people in Greater Boston’s Mystic Valley region , has temporarily suspended its services as the program looks for donations to keep the van running.
Spare Change News highlighted the program in March when it lost funding from the federal government due to low marks on a grading system created by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
“We fell short when it came to their grading system,” said outreach team specialist Aaron Blythe back in March. “But for people who live on the opposite side of Everett to have to come to the office who are disabled, or who have trouble spending their money on a bus to get into the next town, it’s going to create another barrier for them to get the services they need to get off the streets … it’s kind of a domino effect, without having everything set in place it’s easier for things to fall apart.”
ABCD folks are trying to petition the state legislature and the Department of Housing and Community Development to contribute funds to keep the program going.
“Until some funding is restored the MHOT program and van can no longer provide assistance on the streets of Malden, Medford and Everett,” ABCD spokesman Colneth Smiley said in a press release. “Unfortunately, due to great demand and need of the program, the recent funds that were allocated in Malden have been depleted.
“[ABCD] is reaching out to all possible sponsors for their consideration and support, both short term and long term, including funding through the next state supplemental budget.”
The MHOT van, which provides homeless people with basic necessities, such as underwear, socks, t-shirts and toiletries, while linking them up to resources and referrals, including detox centers and shelters, has received support from law enforcement agencies and elected officials from the communities that it serves.
Those looking to support the homeless outreach program MHOT can do so by calling ABCD’s GiveLine at 617-348-6559.