Solano College’s program aims to mitigate homelessness – The Vacaville Reporter

Solano Community College’s Department of Public Safety addresses homelessness through a unique program that exploits higher education as a resource.

The Homeless to College Student Program helps those experiencing homelessness become students at SCC. Once enrolled, officials said, those students now have access to state resources that help pay for books, supplies, food, rent, counseling services, transportation, and other costs. Students only need to fill out the Free Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) or California Dream Application (AB540) to receive aid.

The program came about as a result of campus interactions.

Officials explained that the university campus is an open campus and is sometimes visited by people from homeless communities. During conversations with DPS officers and college staff, it became apparent that they were unaware of the resources that would be available to them as students. After that, the new program was born.

“SCC wants to serve all members of our community and encourages those who need support to enroll in classes. We will help them apply for financial aid, secure food and housing, and receive support services. The fact that our Department of Public Safety Have embarked on this effort to help non-housing demonstrates their commitment to transforming students’ lives.

Dr. Shirley Lewis agreed.

“As dean of Academic Support Services, this is the kind of innovative program this country needs, especially with all that our homeless community is going through right now,” she said in the statement. They need our support and help to help them get back on their feet. This program will provide them with an opportunity to do so.

“When Chief (Brian) Travis first came to us and pitched this idea, we were thrilled to be collaborating with DPS on this new program. Chief Travis has been a great partnership builder and he’s just a great servant leader for our community. We’re so glad he’s here.”

The program is already making an impact. A week ago, a woman walked into the campus in Vallejo with her two young children and was helped registering. The hope is to get more testimonials.

“Through this program, we can really help them take that first step in hopes of improving their lives,” Officer Luz Daniel, lead homeless coordinator for DPS, said in a statement. “We all have a chance to help someone.”

Damien Cooke, a former homeless student, said he had such help. Now part of the Homeless/Students Overcoming Adversity and Return to Offenders (SOAR) program, he was thrilled to launch the new program.

“This program is something our homeless community really needs. Solano College is leading the way with this new program.” I am so glad someone is looking for us. Rather than being shunned elsewhere, Solano College embraces our community. We feel safe and welcome at Solano College so thank you Chief Travis and SCC.”

Travis said the program is another way to serve all members of the Solano community.

“As public servants and custodians of our society, we must always strive to help everyone we serve, especially those who are in need or down on the luck.” confirmed. “We developed this program with that in mind, to help people get the education they need so they can get back on their feet. To have a better life. It’s all about humanity.”

For more information, contact Solano Community College’s Department of Public Safety at 864-7131 or email sccdps@solano.edu.

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