West Chester, Pa (June 23, 2022) – A program that assists residents in the Coatesville area with vital home repairs was awarded $400,000 in state funding, state Senator Carolyn Comitta and state Rep. Dan Williams announced.
The funds, awarded through the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement (PHARE) Fund, come as part of more than $2.8 million awarded to ten organizations supporting housing assistance, affordability, and preventing housing insecurity in Chester County.
The funds for the Coatesville project will support the Movement Community Development Corp’s (MCDC) Coatesville Housing Rehabilitation Program, which aims to provide vital repair and rehabilitation services to vulnerable residents and property owners who may be at risk of losing the ability to live in their homes due to costly repairs.
“Safe, affordable housing is a basic necessity,” Comitta said. “MCDC’s Housing Rehabilitation Program is a community-driven effort to help ensure that community members in need have access to vital home repairs at no cost. As we look to the end of this pandemic, it’s important that we continue to work to ensure that every resident, every senior citizen, and every family has a safe, healthy living environment to call home.”
“MCDC’s Housing Rehabilitation Program is a community-first, results-driven local initiative that has helped many in our district,” Williams said. “It’s critical that we continue to advocate for funding like this in order to ensure residents have some sort of safety net when it comes to unexpected home repairs. I look forward to all the great work that will come as a result of this funding.”
“Our program has helped community members who are widows, who are on fixed incomes, and who are living at or below poverty level at no cost to them. It is providing necessary relief for those who can least afford it. To see the smiles and to hear the heartfelt gratitude that’s expressed by the recipients is reward enough for our efforts. It has given them renewed pride in their homes, and renewed faith in our representatives,” said Alphonso Newsuan, MCDC Founder and Executive Director. “MCDC cannot thank state Representative Dan K. Williams and state Senator Carolyn Comitta enough for all of their support.”
Now in its second year, MCDC has assisted more than 25 residents with home repairs that helped them maintain property value and stay in their homes. Last year, MCDC received $500,000 in PHARE funding.
Administered by the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, PHARE is funded through the Realty Transfer Tax Fund and the Marcellus Shale Fund. All of the Chester County projects were funded through the Realty Transfer Tax Fund.
Other projects that received funding through PHARE are as follows:
$1,000,000 for Pennrose Property’s Liberty House Preservation Program. Located in Phoenxiville, Liberty House is a 50-unit supportive housing community that caters to many of Chester County’s most underserved populations, including those facing housing insecurity and/or who have mental health challenges or intellectual disabilities. The preservation project will provide numerous functional and aesthetic improvements to help ensure the development’s sustained performance over the next thirty years.
$375,000 for the Chester County Department of Community Development for Emergency’s Street Outreach Emergency Response Program, which aims to offer a continuum of services to our most vulnerable individuals in order to make housing insecurity rare, brief, and non-recurring.
$300,000 for the Housing Authority of Chester County’s Housing Locator Program. The program, which helps prevent housing insecurity by helping individuals and families move into permanent housing represents the only housing search assistance program of its kind in Chester County.
$200,000 to the Friends Association for Care and Protection of Children for its Women’s Diversionary Reentry Program (NIA House). NIA House is a diversionary reentry home for women who would otherwise experience housing insecurity upon release from incarceration. In addition to providing interim housing, NIA House serves as a reunification point for women and their children, a place to access multiple wrap-around services, and a safe and understanding environment to ground in community and heal.
$100,000 for the Friends Association for Care and Protection of Children for its Eviction Prevention Court & Homelessness Prevention Program. Now in its second year, the program is the first of its kind in Chester County to provide legal representation, financial support, and social service support to households facing eviction. Currently, it operates in three district courts with the goal of expanding throughout the entire county.
$150,000 for Human Services Inc. for its Safe Haven and Forensic House Community Residence programs, as well as the agency’s two Psychiatric Rehabilitation programs and Homeless Support programs.
$100,000 for the W.C. Atkinson Memorial Community Service Center for Housing Rehabilitation and Intensive Care Management. The Center, which is completing the rehabilitation of and upgrades to its five supportive homes and 22-bed emergency men’s shelter, assists individuals in identifying their root cause of housing insecurity, acquiring stable housing, and becoming self-sufficient.
$100,000 to Safe Harbor of Chester County for its Shelter and Case Management Program. A fully ADA-approved emergency shelter in West Chester, Safe Harbor is the only shelter available for single women and one of the largest for single men in Chester County, providing more than 65 percent of the total emergency shelter beds available for single adults. Safe Harbor provides residents with case management services to help them move toward self-sustainability and permanent housing placement, while also working with former residents to help ensure housing security.
$100,000 to Open Hearth Inc. for its Targeted Homelessness Resource Coordination (THRC) program is a community-wide effort to end housing insecurity in Chester County led by the THRC program coordinator. The coordinator leads case conferencing and resource coordination and works with all housing providers to prioritize individuals in need of permanent housing.
“Chester County is fortunate to have a network of advocates and organizations dedicated to providing all community members with safe and stable housing options,” Comitta said. “This funding maintains our commitment to providing affordable, quality housing for all residents and helps break the cycle of housing instability. I want to thank the government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and community members who make these programs possible.”
For more information on the PHARE program visit www.phfa.org