Mission Statement

Housing Within Reach Mission

Our mission is to provide access and real systems change so that individuals who have a mental illness or co-occurring disorder can secure resource materials in their effort to achieve the American dream of having a safe, affordable and appropriate place to call home in a welcoming and positive environment. We believe that our mission can best be accomplished through the promotion of consumer independence, enhancement of each person’s dignity and worth, and improvement of quality of life.

The high standards and values of our mission are supported through an innovative, community-based initiative that is comprised of consumers, consumer family members, stakeholders in both the private and public sector, local, state and federal government and the general public.

Housing within Reach is designed to create a systems change by providing access to housing resource information, thus creating options and choice for consumers in their living situations. We also strive to provide the public with a positive understanding of the contributions of individuals with mental illness or co-occurring disorders as well as provide a heightened understanding of their needs, issues and concerns. We hope to accomplish both of these goals by using this site to provide the most current sources of comprehensive information pertaining to housing, Not in My Backyard (NIMBY), and related issues.

We carry out our mission by:

  • Selecting qualified Consumer Housing Specialists to partner with existing community housing stakeholders in creating linkages, resource development, and community education efforts.
  • Researching, evaluating, and building a comprehensive information collection and dissemination database of housing resources, housing options, community housing development programs which will identify current needs and issues to aid in the process of developing solutions.
  • Involving key stakeholders in all project activities, including planning, product development, dissemination, and evaluation.
  • Increasing the public's understanding and support for individuals with a mental illness or co-occurring disorders.
  • A longitudinal evaluation of housing issues was conducted that followed 200 consumers who moved from inpatient and institutional settings into the community.

The Housing within Reach network in Tennessee is comprised of professional staff, advocates, volunteers, policy makers, regional administrators, and direct service providers committed to working on behalf of all Tennesseans with a mental illness or co-occurring disorders to help them build the most fulfilled and dignified lives possible.

There have been many people who have invested many hours in the creation and development of this website. Sincere gratitude is extended to all those who have contributed to this housing resource.

Who We Are

Housing within Reach is a program developed through the Real Choice Systems Change Grant, awarded to the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services, Office of Housing and Homeless Services (or OHHS, formerly the Office of Housing, Planning and Development or OHPD) by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), formerly the Health Care Finance Administration (HCFA).

The goals of this housing resource website are two-fold. The first is to provide up-to-date information and access for an array of stakeholders that will result in enduring permanent housing solutions for Tennesseans with mental illness and co-occurring disorders. The second is to effectively reduce the stigma of mental illness statewide, by changing community attitudes and misconceptions to provide a more welcoming environment for persons who reside in Tennessee neighborhoods.

The primary targeted audiences for the Housing within Reach website are:

  • Individuals with Mental Illness or Co-occurring Disorders
  • Families of Individuals with Mental Illness or Co-occurring Disorders
  • Community Housing Stakeholders
  • Behavioral Health Organizations
  • Housing Organizations
  • Policy Makers
  • Mental Health Treatment Agencies
  • Direct Mental Health Treatment Providers
  • Housing Development Organizations
  • Federal, State and Local Housing related agencies
  • Local Community Residents
  • Family Members

Our vision for Housing Within Reach is to continue building a comprehensive Housing Resource portal of access to information regarding the most current housing options, housing locations, eligibility criteria and support services.