SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Community members are excited about the possibility of receiving a $600,000 grant aimed at supporting youth homelessness in the city.

At Monday night’s meeting, the council will discuss applying for the Youth Homelessness Demonstration Program grant.

“If you don’t support and find a way to elevate your next generation, then your city suffers as well,” said community member DeAnza Collins.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development would provide funding based on the number of people between 12 and 24 years old who are in poverty in Greene, Christian and Webster counties.

The city has applied for this grant every year since 2017 but has not been awarded funding.

The Ozarks Alliance to End Homelessness will partner with the City of Springfield and the Community Partnership of the Ozarks to come up with a plan of action.

Community members say starting with the youth homeless population is vital for the city’s growth.

“I think it could be useful to have more support and raise more awareness about the issue,” said Collins.