Columbus House

For 34 years, Columbus House has been providing innovative shelter services and housing solutions to people who are homeless, or at risk of homelessness. Last year, Columbus House served close to 3,000 people through outreach and engagement; emergency and family shelters; permanent supportive housing; programs for seniors, Veterans, and those living with HIV/AIDS; and addiction, health, and employment services in Hartford, New Haven, Middlesex, and New London counties.

In 1992, Columbus House acquired the 7,750-square-foot building, now known as the Annex, adjacent to its New Haven Emergency Shelter and Services building. Over forty employees provide case management and support services to 1,500 clients each year at the Annex. Additionally, the building offers basic services, including accommodations for showers, for those who have been living on the street.

After 20 years of increased use, the Annex building began to show its age and limitations. The rear parking lot remained gravel and was unsafe to navigate for staff and clients, especially during inclement weather. The adjacent sidewalks and front parking lot were also in disrepair, posing further safety risks. The Annex roof, masonry brick façade, and windows were in need of rehabilitation and/or replacement. With every storm, rain would further weaken the structure, causing risk of mold and damage to office equipment. Safety to staff, clients, and visitors was a major concern, as well as costs to the agency and to the environment due to the lack of energy efficiency.

Columbus House applied for and received two NGP grants totaling $233,775 to rehabilitate the Annex.  The Annex now has a new roof, new façade, energy efficient windows, sidewalks, and paved parking. These much needed improvements have made the Annex a safer, more cost effective, handicapped accessible, and inviting facility for all who utilize it and support Columbus House’s mission of providing services to those who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless.

Picture 1

Picture 2

Picture 3

Picture 4