Category Archives: Network

Our own Jane Banks off to DHCD Leadership!

Jane Banks, a leader at Center for Human Development for over 20 years and a stalwart partner to the Network, will be joining DHCD as the new Assistant Undersecretary for the Division of Housing Stabilization (replacing Rose Evans). While her leaving CHD is such a loss for our immediate community, it is fair to say we – and the Commonwealth – have so much to gain with her in this new position.  Please see DHCD’s formal announcement below.

The Network’s Family Services Committee will have an opportunity to relay our thanks and best wishes at its meeting tomorrow.  For others who would like to send thanks and congratulations directly, please contact Jane at

Congratulations, Jane!


DHCD Announcement:

Dear Providers:

I am excited to formally announce that Jane Banks will be joining the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) as the new Assistant Undersecretary for the Division of Housing Stabilization.  Jane is coming to us from the Center for Human Development in Springfield where she worked for nearly twenty years.  While there she held leadership roles with oversight of an array of multi-services programs serving families, children and individuals. She has managed a number of programs including: one of the Commonwealths largest EA shelter programs with shelter capacity of 297 families within their portfolio, HUD funded Supportive Housing Programs, Community Housing Supportive Program for families and individuals in Northampton, a Single Room Occupancy Program, and an very successful EA diversion program.

We are excited to be able to draw on Jane’s extensive experience in management and supervision, program development as well as her deep understanding of housing and homelessness, ranging from emergency shelters to permanent supportive housing

I know you will be as thrilled as I am that Jane has accepted the Assistant Undersecretary position.  She will be transitioning into her new role on July 31st.

Please anticipate that Jane will be reaching out to you all, once she arrives at DHCD.

Ita Mullarkey

Associate Director

Division of Housing Stabilization


Important Correction: Network Funding Cut

An announcement from the Western MA Network to End Homelessness Leadership Council Chair Andrew Morehouse:

I am writing to inform you that much to our surprise, the Network’s earmark funding for Fiscal Year 2017 was actually cut through the Governor’s 9C budget authority.

This cut had not been recorded in any public documentation, which was the source of the Network’s misunderstanding. After sharing the “false positive” news on this blog last week, we received a call from DHCD advising us of the administrative error. We have since received more verbal confirmation and still await written record of the actual correction. Our big mistake!

The Network Steering Committee and Leadership Council will start planning for this funding loss now.  Based on an analysis of expenditures, revenues to date and cash in reserves, the Network has funds to cover projected expenses for approximately three more months, which would bring us to the end of February.

While we may not know the final chapter on this year’s funding, the Network will plan accordingly.

We will be in touch as this process unfolds.


Andrew Morehouse
Executive Director
The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts
97 North Hatfield Road
PO Box 160
Hatfield, MA  01038
413-247-9738  Ext. #115

United Way of Hampshire County Requests Your Input

A Note from the United Way of Hampshire County:

Dear Friends and Providers,

We need your input.  Please advise us on how best to invest one million dollars over the next three years to promote financial well-being and stability in our region.

From your positions, both as community service providers and community members, you are each in a unique position to help us best understand how to support economic security in Hampshire County.  We hope you will complete the survey using the link below.  It should take about 8-9 minutes, and would be immensely value to our efforts.

Please feel free to share this link with your colleagues, clients and anyone else with knowledge of Hampshire County you think would be willing to participate.  The more participation we have the better.

Community Forum on Homelessness in Amherst: Thursday, July 14, 6:45 – 9 pm

A Community Forum on Homelessness in Amherst

Homelessness continues to be a very significant concern in Amherst.  Recent news reports, as well as informal conversations, indicate that individuals who are homeless have difficulty finding a safe and appropriate place to be at night now that Craig’s Place has closed. Furthermore, they experience other difficulties during the day, as well.  While there is discussion among small groups and among individuals, there is no place to discuss what persons who are homeless need and how best to assure that appropriate resources are available within our community.

In collaboration with the Town of Amherst and the Amherst Municipal Affordable Housing Trust, the Amherst Housing and Sheltering Committee is sponsoring a community forum on homelessness.   Our goals are to develop a broadly shared understanding of the scope of homelessness in our community right now and then develop a sound and coordinated strategy on how to address current issues.  Part of this discussion includes how Amherst fits into the region and neighboring communities to better understand context and available resources and opportunities.

Thursday, July 14, 6:45-9 P.M.
Town Room, Amherst Town Hall

Homelessness Forum will be held on Thursday, July 14, from 6:45-9 P.M. in the Town Room of Amherst Town Hall. Our plan is to divide the available time into two parts:

  1. Part 1:  Review and discussion of issues and concerns regarding homelessness in Amherst and currently available services and supports, and including; the services and supports that are currently available to them, and
  2. Part 2:  Discussion of what we should do as a community to address the issues and problems raised in the first part.

We invite the perspectives of individuals who are homeless, as well as the larger Amherst community.

The sponsors wish to encourage the broadest possible participation in this Forum on Homelessness in Amherst.  This invitation was also sent to other individuals and organizations in Amherst.  However, we probably did not include everyone we should have.  So please forward this to anyone you know who might be interested, even if that results in some duplication.  Please click here for a flyer for distribution. Thank you for your assistance.

Please respond to John Hornik ( at your earliest convenience.

Nancy Gregg and John Hornik
For the Amherst Housing and Sheltering Committee