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$25M Housing Assistance Fund Offers Relief To San Antonians Affected By COVID-19

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Photo by "Investment Zen" CC BY 2.0: www.investmentzen.com

Millions of Americans are out of work and struggling to make ends meet due to the ongoing public health crisis. In response, last week San Antonio City Council officially allocated $25 million to help pay the bills of those affected by COVID-19's economic fallout.

Eligible residents can apply for financial assistance from the COVID-19 Emergency Housing Assistance Program for rent, groceries, gas, utilities and medicine. Families can receive up to $3,500 for rent or mortgage payments, $1,500 for utilities and $300 for other essential expenses.

Who qualifies to receive assistance and what are the requirements? Will funds be allocated in time to help with rent and mortgage payments due at the beginning of May? Where does this money come from? How will the program impact the city's already coronavirus-affected budget

The longer this outbreak wreaks havoc on the global economy, the more support people will need. Is the program sustainable long-term? How are local nonprofits also responding and working with the city to struggling San Antonio households some much-needed financial relief?

To apply for emergency assistance for housing expenses San Antonio residents should call 210-207-5910 or visit sanantonio.gov/NHSD.

Individuals wishing to make contributions of $10 or more to the COVID-19 Emergency Housing Assistance Program can donate online here or  text “HousingHelpSA” to 41444. Businesses, corporations and philanthropic partners should email covid19@saafdn.org.

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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, April 30.

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Kim Johnson is the producer for Texas Public Radio’s live, call-in show The Source. She is a Trinity University alum with bachelor’s degrees in Communication and Spanish, and a Master of Arts Degree from the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin.