SAMHSA’s PATH Program is a formula grant authorized by the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Amendments Act of 1990 and was reauthorized by Section 9004 of the 21st Century Cures Act (P.L. 114-255). PATH, part of the first major federal legislative response to homelessness, is administered by the SAMHSA Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS). (Learn more about block grants.)
PATH grants are distributed annually to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Each state or territory solicits proposals and awards funds to local public or nonprofit organizations, known as PATH providers.
Supported Activities for PATH
Across the United States, approximately 450 local organizations offer an array of essential services and supports that may not be supported by mainstream mental health programs. In total, PATH staff outreached to 103,933 individuals in 2021 and enrolled 58,821 PATH-eligible clients with the following services:
- Screening and diagnostic treatment
- Habilitation and rehabilitation
- Community mental health
- Substance use disorders treatment
- Referrals for primary health care, job training, educational services, and housing
- Housing services as specified in Section 522(b)(10) of the Public Health Service Act
Some PATH providers offer all of these services, while others focus on providing one or two of them.
PATH Program Management
Each year, CMHS issues a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) prepared and submitted by State PATH Contacts (SPCs) under the signature of the governor (or designee) of a state or territory. States and territories must complete the application included in the NOFO to receive PATH funding. The NOFO is available on the WebBGAS website, an online application system used for SAMHSA block grants and the PATH program. Applications are due 60 days from the release of the NOFO and must be submitted through the WeBGAS site.
While the federal PATH application process for states and territories is noncompetitive, local public or nonprofit organizations may compete for grant award funding. Further, all PATH grant recipients, except U.S. territories, are required to contribute one dollar for every three dollars of federal money received.
PATH grant award recipients must adhere to specific requirements in order to maintain their funding. Government Project Officers (GPOs) are assigned to each state and territory by SAMHSA to assist SPCs in managing the PATH program. GPOs address issues related to the PATH legislation, the PATH application, program monitoring, and other areas as needed.
Data Collection and PATH Data Exchange (PDX)
PATH providers are required to submit annual PATH data reports through the PATH Data Exchange (PDX), an online data collection tool that aggregates PATH provider Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) data. Each state or territory has a designated SPC who offers training and technical assistance to providers. SPCs help providers prepare PATH data reports and use the PDX. SPCs also assist providers in administering local PATH programs.
Other SAMHSA Homelessness Programs and Services
SAMHSA's homelessness programs support various mental and substance use disorder treatments and recovery-oriented services.
- Cooperative Agreements to Benefit Homeless Individuals (CABHI)
- Grants for the Benefit of Homeless Individuals (GBHI)
- Treatment for Individuals Experiencing Homelessness (TIEH)
- SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR)
Find information about current grant announcements.
Learn more about block grants.