Maricopa County is celebrating the groundbreaking of Ozanam Manor II that took place on Tuesday, May 2 at the project site, 2120 S. 3rd Drive in Phoenix.
Maricopa County contributed $6 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to help build Ozanam Manor II, also known as “Oz II.” The completed project will bring 100 new transitional housing units designed to serve the needs of older adults experiencing homelessness.
“I’m not sure people understand how many seniors are homeless or struggling to stay in their homes. It’s heartbreaking, and we want to do whatever we can to help,” said Board of Supervisors Chairman Clint Hickman, District 4. “While a single housing project can’t solve everything, this investment by our board is an important and meaningful step in providing security and safety to older folks who have fallen on hard times.”
The new facility will serve as a critical resource for the segment of older adults who are unable to make ends meet on a fixed income with inflation rapidly increasing rent and food prices.
- In the early 1990s, only 11 percent of the adult homeless population was 50 or older. By 2003, the homeless senior population had increased to 37 percent. Today, the largest age group of those experiencing or at risk of experiencing homelessness is still those over 55. (Source: State of Homelessness, Arizona Department of Economic Security, Dec. 2022).
“It’s just unacceptable to me that someone could live 50 years, 60 years, and be living on the streets or in a tent in the richest country in the world. Are you kidding me?” said Supervisor Steve Gallardo, District 5. “We have a moral obligation to help, and that’s what we’re doing through this partnership with the amazing people at St. Vincent de Paul.”
The new facility will be operated by St. Vincent de Paul, a nonprofit organization with a long history of serving those in need in Maricopa County. Through Oz Manor II, St. Vincent de Paul will provide a range of services, including food assistance, wellness, and other support services to help seniors re-establish permanent housing and connections to resources to help them exit homelessness.
“This is our moment to do our part to help some of our most vulnerable neighbors during a critical time by expanding on a model of transitional housing with proven success,” said Shannon Clancy, St. Vincent de Paul's Rob & Melani Walton Endowed CEO. “Our unhoused seniors, veterans, and neighbors with disabilities deserve greater access to a housing program as dignified and loving as Ozanam Manor — a place to help them find a home, and a support system with wraparound care that ensures their long-term housing success.”
Residents can remain in the transitional housing at Ozanam Manor for up to two years as they work through a plan to achieve stability.
For more information on programs available to help Maricopa County residents, visit Maricopa.gov/HelpWithBills.
About Maricopa County Human Services
The Maricopa County Human Services Department (HSD) builds resiliency in the community and promotes the well-being of County residents experiencing adversity through a variety of programs and services to help people and families thrive. These opportunities include early childhood education, housing, and homeownership, independent living services for seniors and adults with disabilities, career development for job seekers with barriers to employment, crisis rental and utility assistance, and support for people experiencing homelessness. HSD is committed to delivering innovative, equitable, inclusive, and comprehensive services in a collaborative approach that preserves dignity, promotes respect, and facilitates social and economic mobility. Learn more about the financial, educational, and support resources available to Maricopa County residents at Maricopa.gov/HSD.