Approximately 160 families in the Middletown area will be eligible for up to $250 to assist with emergency needs under a new program supported by United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s Middletown area center.
United Way is partnering with Community-Building Institute of Middletown to help families with acute needs, many related to COVID-19, but also aims to connect them to long-term services.
Community-Building Institute will work with liaisons from each of the four area school districts – Trenton, Madison, Middletown, and Monroe – to identify families in need with school-age children. Each family can receive a maximum of $250 to assist with expenses not covered by other area social services. While many needs are of a chronic nature due to long-term poverty, this fund will be focused on acute situations, especially those arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.
CBI is already receiving applications and has a team of Success Coaches working directly with families to determine their needs (utilities, mortgage, car repair, etc.) as well as whether they can benefit from other community programs and employment agencies.
“We are seeing such a need for utility assistance, primarily from families who lost their jobs or income from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said CBI Executive Director Karin Maney. “The HEAP program is a great resource for families but will not assist if they owe money. We have been able to keep families from having their electric disconnected, which adds to additional fees. For those families who have experienced job loss, we are able to connect them to our Community Staffing Solutions for further assistance finding a job.”
United Way is granting $40,000, including $10,000 provided by PNC Bank, to underwrite the effort, which sprung from work on the Middletown Poverty Uprising initiative.
“We established foundations for this work through all of us coming together to discuss the best ways to help Middletown-area families, both short and long-term,” said Terry Sherrer, director of United Way’s Middletown area center. “United Way has played a crucial part in the response to the pandemic – this effort takes it a step further, not only with the emergency assistance, but with connecting people to services for long-term help.”