The majority of homeless New Yorkers who sleep on the street or in subways are single adults. On average, single adults endure the longest periods of homelessness. Many of these individuals struggle with mental illness or other severe health problems and have endured long periods of isolation and anxiety. Some are fighting with substance abuse problems. Chronic homelessness is horrific for the individuals who must endure it and far more costly than permanent supportive housing.
Lantern Community Services programs prove that permanent supportive housing can transform the lives of formerly homeless single adults. Our staff develop a service plan with each resident, using motivational interviewing techniques that are designed to empower the tenants to take control of their treatment. Staff members provide a variety of different services, including mental health counseling, substance abuse counseling, nutritional services, employment services, and money management training. Single Resident Occupancy (SRO) units have steadily declined in New York City, but Lantern Organization has supported single adults by preserving over 200 SRO units.