HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — The city of Huntsville is granting funds to eight area nonprofits that serve people dealing with or who are at risk of becoming homeless.   

The city council notes that as the city has expanded so has the population of homeless people throughout the area.   

Susan lives in the Derrick Street homeless camp in Huntsville. She says she just needs a place to live ever since the Covid-19 pandemic changed her living situation. 

“I am homeless because at this juncture I have nowhere to move into,” Susan explained. “How do I get a place to live if I have nowhere or no way to access the resources I need to make that successful.” 

Susan moved from Decatur City to Madison County because homeless nonprofits in Decatur do not receive assistance from city leaders. 

According to the north Alabama coalition for the homeless, there were at least 549 unhoused people living in the city in 2022. On March 9, Huntsville city council approved the grant funding a total of $364,000.  

Family Services Center Inc. has been at the forefront of the issue and will be a recipient of much-needed funding from the city. 

“We found without question that the pandemic certainly probably didn’t do any of us any favors,” said Darin Geiger, director of family Services. “For those that were struggling all it did was exacerbate their situations that they are already going through.” 

The Community Development Department will distribute funds from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs on behalf of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.   

In February Madison County commissioner Violet Edwards announced a $65,000 grant for three area nonprofits.  

Huntsville city is hopeful that this could possibly set a pace for other counties that are faced with a growing family homelessness issue.