Families First provides solutions that combine housing and social services to help people facing complex challenges live more stable, productive lives. We collaborate with other agencies to deliver housing along with support services and training that promote family self-sufficiency and collaborative community support.
Transitional & Supportive Housing
Finding a safe, comfortable yet temporary living environment – coupled with the appropriate support services and access to other existing community resources – may be all that a family needs to steady themselves for long-term success. Our services support those with nowhere else to go, from young mothers trying to get ahead, to those who are working to eliminate substance abuse, deal with illness and/or achieve emotional stability.
Shelter-A-Family serves chronically homeless persons who are suffering from mental illness, substance abuse, and/or have been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. Families First provides these individuals and their families with housing and arranges for the delivery of services and supports. We provide supportive services such as mental health treatment, assistance with entitlements, case management, family reunification, and life skills training and workshops. Other services are offered through referrals to other partner organizations and agencies, such as health care and substance abuse treatment. The ultimate goal is to ensure these individuals and their families are set on a pathway to become economically independent and self-sufficient.
All families are currently placed in single family apartments within one apartment complex in the city of Atlanta. Families First maintains an on-site office in a handicap accessible apartment so we can be readily available to all families.
The management staff (including leasing agent, property manager, assistance property manager, and maintenance) are available Monday-Friday; 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Saturday; 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Maintenance is also available by calling the "After Hours" line on evenings and weekends in the case of emergencies.
Our dedicated Shelter-A-Family staff are available Monday – Friday; 9 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. as well as some evenings based on program activities. Families First also provides weekend coverage in the case of emergencies.
How Do Supportive Services Work?
Each client receives supportive services based upon the development of an Individual Service Plan. Social workers meet with the client at least twice per month and continues to assess their needs and provide case management tailored to the client. In addition, a monthly community meeting offers participants an opportunity to give each other support and encouragement, share resources, meet with key community providers, and assist each other in developing a healthy, sober lifestyle.
How is Shelter-A-Family funded?
Shelter-A-Family is funded by grants received through a variety of sources. Contributors include HUD/DCA, Fulton County Board of Commissioners, City of Atlanta, and United Way.
The tenant’s rent contribution is calculated in accordance with HUD’s standards. Determination of the appropriate rent payment is applied using the following steps:
- Calculate 10% of monthly gross income
- Calculate 30% of monthly adjusted income
- Determine whether a welfare rent payment may apply
- Determine which of these rent amounts is the highest
- Set the tenant’s rent contribution at this amount
All referrals into the program must come from the Atlanta Continuum of Care (CoC). The CoC is the Coordinated Entry point for the City of Atlanta.
Any person experiencing any form of homelessness must go through one of these agencies to obtain a housing assessment and referral. Shelter-A-Family cannot accept anyone unless they are referred through the Continuum of Care housing queue.
The Gateway Center | 404-215-6600
275 Pryor Street, SW Atlanta, GA 30303
Program hours: Mon-Fri 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. No appointment necessary. 15 slots are available for sign-up beginning at 7 a.m.
Monday 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.
1st and 3rd Sundays 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. are by outreach only
Tuesday 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Wednesday 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Thursday 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.
City of Refuge
1st and 3rd Fridays 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
1st and 3rd Saturdays 7:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. are by outreach only
2nd and 4th Fridays 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Funding provided in part by the Fulton County Board of Commissioners under the guidance of the Department of Housing and Community Development CSP Program.