Homeless Assistance

Are you homeless or about to become homeless? A Local Coordinated Entry program can help you think about next steps.

News and announcements

Homeless Service Worker Stipend Program

Homeless service providers in Washington may be eligible for up to $4,000 in economic relief.

Homeless service workers with an immediate economic need and income at or below 80% of the county area median income where they live may be eligible for a stipend up to $2,000.

A second stipend payment of up to $2,000 is also available for individuals who received an initial stipend payment and are still working for the same eligible organization six months after approval of the first stipend payment.

Eligible homeless service providers work directly on-site with persons experiencing homelessness or residents of transitional or permanent supportive housing. 

Learn more and apply today. 

Homeless Workforce Study

More information will be posted soon. 

New study to learn about the impacts of trauma on providers

Across Washington State, homeless service providers working in shelters, outreach, and permanent supportive housing disproportionately suffer from workplace stress and trauma. Commerce is working with BDS Planning and D-Fine Concepts to develop recommendations and potential interventions to support homeless service providers who work in traumatizing environments, to better manage and address workplace stress and trauma.

BDS Planning is conducting a series of surveys, focus groups, and conversations with homeless service providers around the state and will analyze the results with the help of an advisory committee to develop recommendations. How to Participate: Phase I of this study is a survey of homeless service providers including permanent supportive housing and homeless shelter staff, outreach workers, and others who professionally provide homeless services in Washington State.

Homeless service providers are invited to take the survey  Use the password HSPStrauma to submit a response.

Respondents are eligible for a $10 electronic gift after completing the survey. For questions or accommodations, please contact Melodie at survey@bdsplanning.com.

Phase II will include developing recommendations from the survey responses. If you would like to participate, please contact BDS at survey@bdsplanning.com.

New rental assistance and homeless system performance measures:

New state funding sources were passed into law following the 2021 legislative session. These funds aim to prevent evictions by providing resources to households most likely to become homeless, suffer severe health consequences, or both, after an eviction. Additionally, funds prioritize households disproportionately impacted by public health emergencies, homelessness, and housing instability.

Learn more about new rental assistance and homeless system performance measures.


Program links

The Office of Family and Adult Homelessness (OFAH) supports homeless crisis response systems and best practices that efficiently reduce the number of people living outside.

Read more about the Office of Family and Adult Homelessness.

The Office of Supportive Housing is tasked with coordinating with other state agencies to expand the availability of supportive housing for persons with mental health conditions or substance use disorders.

Read more about the Office of Supportive Housing.

Every night, thousands of homeless youth in Washington go to sleep without the safety, stability, and support of a family or home. Our office leads statewide efforts to reduce and prevent youth homelessness through five priority service areas.

Read more about the Office of Homeless Youth.

Washington State Homeless System Performance Reports provide information on critical homeless system performance measures, including several HEARTH Homeless System Performance Measures. The Homeless System Performance Reports also provide other contextual information about a community’s homeless crisis response system.

Read more about Homeless System Performance.

Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS)

Read more about HMIS.

The Homelessness Housing and Assistance Act requires each county to conduct an annual one-day survey of people without permanent housing – both sheltered and unsheltered.

Read more about Point in Time Count.

Continuum of Care is a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Program to promote community-wide commitment and support to end homelessness. It provides grants to nonprofit agencies, state and local governments through an annual competition. Commerce works with 34 counties represented in the Balance of Washington State Continuum of Care Homeless Steering Committee to submit a consolidated funding application.

Read more about Continuum of Care.

Commerce homeless grants require service providers to demonstrate competency and equity in best practices. Our goal is that these trainings prepare grantees with the knowledge and tools needed to foster resiliency on an individual, programmatic and agency-level, strengthening their community’s response to homelessness.

Read more about Homeless Service Grantee training.