EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - Assistance is on the way for families who have been struggling to pay rent or utility bills as a result of COVID-19. Aurora hopes to keep as many families housed during this time as they can.
When it comes to paying your bills, there are a lot of barriers that COVID-19 has contributed to making it difficult for many to make those payments.
Aurora’s Executive Director Zac Heronemus says there are approximately 2,500 households in Evansville facing eviction and/or utility shut-off.
“Whether it’s job loss, job decrease, income decrease, some of it has been health-related as well,” said Heronemus.
The city of Evansville has now allocated $350,000 in HUD ESG funding to help provide assistance for those households.
“Those households facing two or more months in the rears of rental and utility assistance is what these funds are going to be used for,” said Heronemus.
Aurora’s mission is to end homelessness, and Heronemus says eviction has both an immediate and long term effect on families.
“There’s a lot of local property owners and managers that if you have an eviction on your record, it could be upwards of seven years before they would rent to you since that previous eviction,” said Heronemus.
Heronemus is encouraging those who might qualify for the assistance to apply on the state’s website or call Aurora’s hotline at 812-428-3246. But first and foremost, he says to talk to your landlord.
“This is just an extension of our rootwork as an organization, and we are just happy to have this opportunity to positively impact people’s lives by keeping them housed,” said Heronemus.
Heronemus tells us there will also be a 2nd round of funding coming from the state to continue assisting those facing eviction.