ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A local non-profit working to end family homelessness just brought in 10 new families and they don’t plan to stop anytime soon. The residents at one Albuquerque apartment complex are all families, getting a new chance at a better life.
“Saranam works with families experiencing homelessness for up to two years,” said Tracy Weaver, Executive Director of Saranam. “We provide a foundation of housing, a fully-furnished apartment with everything they need to live inside for free for them while we send adults to school.”
Saranam works with homeless families to get them off the streets. Then, they give them the tools and rehabilitation they need to succeed, whether it’s a GED, vocational training, college, or even life skills.
“Once they are able to support themselves with their increased education, they are able to actually sustain it because they’ve learned how to budget and parent and manage their time and their household and their job,” said Weaver. “We’re a two-generational program so what we’re teaching the adults in terms of life skills, we’re also teaching the children.”
They also make sure the kids have everything they need for the classroom. Weaver says the pandemic serves as a reminder of just how important a job and steady income can be to keep a family from becoming homeless.
“We’re really working to keep people stable,” said Weaver. “All of our families were able to stay in their homes once March hit. They had access to technology so they didn’t have to drop out of school.”
She says it’s also important for these parents to know they have support while they’re trying to provide for their families. She says working with the entire family has a greater long-term impact.
“We’re giving them opportunities to finish their school, to get their vocational certificates, their degrees,” said Weaver. “They can get the jobs and the careers that they really want and that are still out there, so they don’t ever have to fall back into the poverty cycle again.”
As of this fall, they’re bringing in 10 new families, including 21 children, which means they’re providing two-year homes for a total of 18 families. Saranam is also working to set up another complex on the west side that could serve an additional 25 families.