The Fifth Third Foundation is pleased to announce a collaboration with NeighborWorks America to support efforts addressing the impacts of COVID-19 in local communities.
The $600,000 collaboration, which will be funded through The Fifth Third Foundation’s COVID-19 relief, recovery and resiliency funds, will assist the network organizations’ efforts to prevent foreclosures and evictions; assist with the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic in communities; respond to critical needs; provide foreclosure and eviction mitigation and counseling; and financial coaching and emergency rental assistance for clients, as well as homeownership counseling and education. $50,000 will go toward these efforts in Eastern Michigan with donations to Southwest Solutions and Lighthouse.
“The pandemic has, for many, severely affected their ability to meet the basic human need of having shelter over their heads,” said Jason Paulateer, market manager of Community and Economic Development at Fifth Third Bank. “These funds will help people stay in their homes and provide them with the necessary financial coaching to assist them in establishing stability.”
Since March, 47 nonprofit organizations in metro Detroit have received $1.3 million in COVID-19 relief, recovery and resiliency funds, as well as personal protection equipment. The funds have been used for COVID-19 food assistance, medical supplies, small businesses, operations and servicing low-to-moderate income individuals.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has presented unprecedented challenges for our agency; both logistically and in resourcing adequate solutions to respond to the community’s rapidly changing needs,” said Ryan Hertz, Lighthouse president and CEO. “We are incredibly grateful for the support and we know it will go a long way in helping us provide emergency resources to struggling Oakland County families.”
According to UC Berkley’s Terner Center for Housing, nearly 16.5 million renter households have at least one worker in an industry likely to be immediately affected by efforts to flatten the curve in the COVID-19 pandemic. That means nearly 50 million people who live in a renter household are likely experiencing immediate job or income losses. Persons of color and low-income households have been identified as the most vulnerable to the impact of the pandemic.
Joseph M. Tasse, interim president and CEO of Southwest Solutions added, “The COVID crisis has intensified the need in our community and the demand for our services to help address this need. This grant will support our efforts to keep struggling homeowners in their homes through foreclosure mitigation counseling; help tenants in our affordable apartment buildings weather the rent crisis; provide homebuyer education and promote affordable homeownership so that families can build wealth; and provide financial coaching.”
To learn more about how Fifth Third is helping its employees, customers and communities during the pandemic, please visit 53.com/covid19. To learn more about NeighborWorks America, please visit neighborworks.org.