The COOL Family/Transitional Housing Program has been in operation since 1988. This program provides services and programs including life skills training along with rent and utilities paid homes for homeless families, many of whom are struggling single parents. COOL guest families benefit from the opportunity to complete educational training, secure better employment and save for first and last months’ rent or a down payment on a home. While living in COOL housing, families will work with a case manager who will help to ensure that each family is financially stable and equipped for a long lasting transition to self-sufficiency upon leaving COOL.
Where are COOL Family Housing homes located?
COOL owns a 4 unit apartment building in the downtown Waukegan area near the police station where 4 families live while they work on their goal of becoming self sufficient independent, working moms, dads and couples. COOL also houses 2 families at a duplex home in the northern suburbs of Waukegan. Four more families are housed at two different sites in Zion, Illinois. All COOL Housing ‘guest” families live in scattered sites throughout Waukegan and Zion.
No families are housed, sheltered, or receive housing services at 800 Glen Flora. That location is the home of only the COOL Food Pantry East and offices for COOL executive and support staff.
Recently expanded due to the donation of a new duplex from a generous donor, the COOL Family/Transitional Housing currently provides 10 housing units for struggling homeless families to begin life anew. COOL Family Housing units include single family homes, duplex units and apartments for smaller families. Housing guests are selected from applications submitted to COOL on the basis of need, appropriateness for the program and availability of housing.
Homeless families accepted in the program should be employed full time, have a commitment to beginning a new life including establishing a savings account, and a willingness to comply with program rules and guidelines.
Guests are referred to COOL by state and local government agencies, private programs, churches, and individuals. Anyone wishing to apply for COOL Family Housing can call (847) 662-1340 for an application form or download it here.
Since the Family Housing Program was initiated, over 200 families have graduated; Fifteen saved enough money while in the program to become first time home-buyers and many were single women with children. 85% of our guests have maintained independent living long after leaving the COOL program.
Although many families applying for help at COOL are single parents, the program accepts two parent households as well as single Mom’s and single Dad’s who are motivated to work hard to achieve self-sufficiency.
COOL receives funding from government grants, corporate and private foundations, and the United Way of Lake County. COOL also receives financial contributions from member churches and generous individuals.
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