GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — As finding affordable housing continues to be a struggle for many across our country, a group in West Michigan has found the solution for some people who live here.

“Housing is really essential to the health and well-being of individuals and our community as a whole,” said Vera Beech, the executive director of Community Rebuilders.

“One of the key challenges is finding affordable housing in a market that rates are going up,” said Jameela Maun, the portfolio manager for Community Rebuilders.

Community Rebuilders is a West Michigan group working to end homelessness.

“A home is where people can feel safe and secure enough to pursue their wants and dreams,” said Beech.

The organization is working to help people find homes for the holidays. It placed 36 people in homes already, with a total of 48 to be housed by early 2021.

There are a few challenges including finding affordable housing to begin with and having good relationships with landlords.

“That has truly been essential in working with participants that need to obtain housing,” said Maun.

These women say while they have much more work to do, they’re glad they’re getting started.

“It is really important to just be empathetic, to be there for the participant, identifying their strengths, and walking alongside them until they get into housing,” said Maun.

“Addressing homelessness is key to the health of our entire community, not just now during the pandemic, but always,” said Beech.

This project is the first step of an initiative between Community Rebuilders and the city of Grand Rapids to solve homelessness one part of the city at a time.