How to Apply For Emergency Homeless Assistance

Emergency homeless assistance can provide crucial aid to families and individuals without other options available to them. The main source for receiving this aid are shelter intake centers.

Applicant households must meet one or more priority categories under the local Continuum of Care (CoC). Usually this involves those fleeing domestic violence, dating violence, s*xual assault or stalking as well as human trafficking.


Shelter is one of the essential human needs, essential to survival. A place to feel safe, warm and dry when exposed to elements such as rain or snow, such as tents, houses or apartments or natural formations such as caves. Shelter can also take the form of people or organizations providing assistance – examples being homeless shelters, bomb shelters or animal shelters.

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Emergency Housing Voucher (EHV) program provides assistance to help people secure permanent housing. This assistance is offered to people with low income that falls below the median income in their area and those currently experiencing or at risk of homelessness, such as families or individuals experiencing homelessness or at risk of becoming homeless. Families or individuals rent an apartment or house using vouchers provided through this program by subsidizing part of their monthly rent payment. It also offers landlord incentives including bonuses paid upon lease signing, security deposits and repair funds.

The EHV program is administered by Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) and Continuums of Care (CoCs), who determine who qualifies for it based on eligibility criteria established by both organizations. Eligible households include individuals or households with children experiencing or at-risk of homelessness; fleeing domestic violence, dating violence, s*xual assault, stalking or severe trauma events; or are at risk for losing their housing.

You can check the requirements here to see if you are qualify to apply.

Health Care

If your family is facing an eviction notice, utility shut-off notice, squatting situation or other emergency, temporary shelter may be an available resource to address these situations. Eligibility criteria for these programs includes having an income below 80% of median family income for your county or metropolitan area.

New York’s Emergency Housing Voucher program (EHV) offers participants with rental assistance that covers 30% of rent. In order to be eligible, households must be referred by their Continuum of Care (CoC) and meet other eligibility criteria; free helplines, directories, and support organizations may help participants connect with assistance if experiencing domestic violence or severe mental illness; in this regard the CoC can assess needs, refer appropriate PHAs as well as help apply for their voucher.


If you’re homeless or at risk of losing your housing in New York, emergency housing assistance may be available through charities and Department of Homeless Services Intake Centers. They may offer help with rent, utility bills, food or even job programs such as health care and counseling – perhaps you may even qualify for Section 8.

If your need is urgent, the City can assist with providing temporary shelter or rental assistance until a more long-term solution can be found. When applying, photo ID, proof of income for all members of the household and bank statements will all be required as proof. Furthermore, certain programs require copies of eviction notices or marshal’s 72-hour notices so be sure to bring all relevant documentation with you.

Emergency Housing Voucher (EHV) program offers financial relief for individuals and families who meet certain criteria – See the link.