The Bridge Fund of Westchester

A Program of The Bridge Fund of New York Inc.

Who we are.

Grace Perry, Director

Grace Perry

Director, The Bridge Fund of Westchester

Jacqueline Melendez, Grace Perry, Sharon Syndor-Whyte
Left to Right: Jacqueline Melendez, Grace Perry, and
Sharon Syndor-Whyte

Director’s Annual Message

The Atmosphere in Westchester County

  • There are 97,454 people living in poverty or 10% of the population.
  • A person must work 135 hours per week, or 3.4 full time jobs, to afford a 2-bedroom apartment without being considered “housing cost burdened,” where 30% or more of income is spent on rent.
  • An estimated 40,240 households receive Food Stamps.
  • Today Westchester has more homeless people than any other New York county outside New York City
  • 739 children in 2018, up 17.7% from 2015
  • 396 families in 2018, up 5.6% from 2015
  • 1,827 total people in 2018, up 1.7% from 2015

What is causing Westchester’s high rate of homelessness?

  • Poverty and under employment
  • Divorce and failure to provide child support by one partner
  • Less acceptance of domestic violence, primarily of women
  • Returning veterans with mental health or drug problems
  • Declines in Federal housing subsidies
  • Aging out of foster care
  • Increasing rents in Westchester County
  • Poor education and lack of job skills

Westchester’s Hidden Homeless

  • Westchester has over 1,800 homeless school-age children living doubled-up with
    relatives or others, twice as many as in homeless shelters.
  • No one has any statistical data on the living conditions of these 1,800 “hidden
    homeless” school-age children.

The Bridge Fund of Westchester Experience in 2018

  • Average client spends over 40% of their income on rent
  • 369 households received financial assistance for rental arrears in 2018, up 9% from 2017
  • We provided 85 households with food pantry assistance

Our Response in 2019

  • Try to raise additional funds to meet increasing demand of Westchester residents
  • Explore the development of community-based relationships throughout the county
    including Peekskill and Yonkers
  • Put clients in touch with workforce development services

Grace Perry, Director
The Bridge Fund of Westchester

The Bridge Fund of Westchester Program Activity 2016