United Way offering $250 to Butler County families suffering during coronavirus

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Families with children in four Butler County school districts are 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 160 families with acute needs, many related to COVID-19, but also aims to connect them to long-term services, according to the United Way.

CBI will work with liaisons from each of the four area school districts — Middletown, Monroe, Edgewood and Madison — 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, according to the United Way. 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.

Terry Sherrer, executive director of United Way’s Middletown area center, said the agency has “played a crucial part” in the response to the pandemic. He said this effort takes it a step further, not only with the emergency assistance, but with connecting people to services for long-term help.

“Families are suffering,” Sherrer said. “Families need help.”

CBI has a team of Success Coaches working with families to determine their needs (utilities, mortgage, car repair, etc.) as well as if they can benefit from other community programs and employment agencies.

Karin Maney, executive director of CBI, said the agency is seeing “such a need” for utility assistance, primarily from families who lost their jobs or income from the pandemic. While she said the HEAP program is “a great resource” for families, it will not assist if they owe money.

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.

WHAT: United Way emergency funds

WHO’S ELIGIBLE: Families with students in the Middletown, Monroe, Edgewood and Madison school districts

WHAT’S AVAILABLE: $250 per family

HOW TO APPLY: Go to cbimiddletown.org/about-cbi/emergency-assistance/ or call Cari Wynn at 513-887-5505

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