VAN NUYS (CBSLA) — A new program will be starting in Van Nuys and North Hills to help homeless families with school-age children, city officials announced Monday.

The $770,000 “Kids First” program is a collaborative effort led by Los Angeles City Council President Nury Martinez that will give educational, life-needs and housing assistance throughout the LAUSD school year to over 50 families.

“We recognize that there are over 18,000 in LAUSD and a very high concentration is right here along Sepulveda Blvd. and in the northeast San Fernando Valley in many of the hotels along the boulevard,” Martinez said.

About 60 children live in the Hyland Motel at 7041 Sepulveda Blvd., where Martinez held a Monday news conference.

“Homeless children living temporarily in motels have major challenges in all facets of their lives: education, healthcare, housing and food access,” Martinez said.

“This program is designed as a safety net to assist them in real-time, identify specific areas of need with a focus on education and housing. We want to help these school-aged children succeed in and out of school and end the cycle of intergenerational poverty they and their families so often find themselves in.”

The program involves nonprofits LA Family Housing, North Valley Caring Services and New Economics for Women, representing a working group that will meet regularly and closely monitor the progress and needs of the students and their families for a full school year.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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