Special to The Truth
The cross over to January 1 traditionally signifies not just the start of a new year but an ushering in of new goals, new aspirations and new opportunities. On the first Friday of this new year, two local Toledo institutions took center stage as they announced a new opportunity available to central city Toledo residents.
On Friday, January 6, 2023, the lobby of Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union was filled with an air of hope, opportunity and change as Bon Secours Mercy Health and Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union announced the launch of new partnership that will benefit homeowners in Toledo’s inner-city neighborhoods.
Over the next five years, Bon Secours Mercy Health has pledged a $3 Million dollar investment in the Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union, the monies are a part of Mercy’s Direct Community Investment Program.
The $3 million investment will support the credit union’s new Neighborhood and Home Revitalization Program, a loan product designed to provide community members with a low interest loan for the purposes of completing home repairs to their primary residences. The program will also work to expand community assistance efforts by providing members with access to with vital wrap around services that include a financial literacy curriculum and health referrals.
“This loan program is going to do a lot more than just roof repair,” said Suzette R. Cowell, CEO, and treasurer of Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union, “This investment is providing loan capital for all the vital home repairs that homes in our neighborhoods need. Roofs, gutters, foundations, waterproofing, windows, floors, insulation and siding. Inside and out are going to be able to help homeowners do what is needed” she said.
The Neighborhood and Home Revitalization Program has a target goal of 10 homes each quarter with a total goal of 40 homes in its first calendar year. Priority will be giving to those homeowners who qualify for membership at Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union and include those in the Cherry Legacy, a neighborhood of focus for Bon Secours Mercy Health.
“Our central city homeowners often find themselves in a tough position if they do not qualify for many of the housing supports available in our community. This fund is intended to offer diverse capital to fund home repair, while also promoting financial education and financial stability,” said Kendra Smith, vice president of community health, BSMH.
“Right now, our community has an unprecedent number of resources at our disposal to address housing needs, our goal is to come alongside those programs and resources to ensure that as many residents as possible have access to funds that can improve the conditions of their homes and raise property values, creating greater stability in Toledo neighborhoods.”
Applications for the program are open at Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union, 1441 Dorr St, Toledo Ohio 43607.