The Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) program is designed to help improve the quality of emergency shelters and transitional housing for the homeless, to make available additional shelters, to meet the costs of operating shelters, to provide essential social services to homeless individuals, and to help prevent homelessness.

Eligible activities include the rehabilitation or conversion of a shelter, its maintenance and operations, shelter supportive services, homeless prevention, and administration of projects.

Certain activities are not eligible, such as acquisition of property, new construction of buildings, planning/community building, staff training, fund raising, and demolition.


Grantees may use the grant for one or more of the following activities or services relating to emergency shelter and transitional housing for the homeless:

  • Renovation, major rehabilitation, or conversion of buildings to use as shelters for the homeless.
  • Provision of essential services to the homeless (not more than 30 percent of the grant, unless waived by HUD).
  • Payment of operations (not more than 10 Percent of the grant security, fuel, equipment, insurance, utilities, and furnishings).
  • Homeless prevention activities (not more than 30 percent of the grant).