Housing Authority receives $2.3 million to assist residents in public housing

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The Lucas Metropolitan Housing Authority has received an endowment that will allow them to better help residents in low-income housing areas. On Friday, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development awards $10.6 million to four Public Housing Authorities. The LMHA received $2.3 million as part of that award.

HUD is making these local investments as part of its Jobs Plus Initiative, which combines traditional employment, training, and job placement services with a rent incentive and a place-based investment in building "community support for work." The program works with unemployed residents to find work, and with underemployed residents to take the steps necessary to advance their careers.

“These investments help public housing residents reach their dreams,” said Secretary Ben Carson. “The idea is simple-connect families with educational opportunities, job training and other services so they can find better paying jobs and achieve self-sufficiency.”

Here in Toledo, Ravine Park Village and Birmingham Terrace will combine to implement the Jobs Plus Initiative. To support job retention and advancement in the Jobs Plus program, participants will receive employment readiness training and barrier removal from Pathway, supportive services and barrier assistance from Zepf Center, financial literacy from LISC, and youth employment opportunities from the YMCA.

"With Lucas County recorded as one of twelve counties with the highest percentage of residents living in poverty in Ohio, we recognize the significance of LMHA receiving the coveted Jobs Plus grant,” Mayor Kapszukiewicz said. “It is imperative that we continue to identify sustainable strategies to address the county’s poverty rate of 25 percent. This grant presents an important resource to provide wrap around services to our most vulnerable families. We are eager to continue our partnership with LMHA by providing employment for residents with the goal of identifying permanent opportunities.”

“We are thrilled to have received the Jobs Plus Initiative Grant!" said Demetria Simpson, President and Chief Executive Officer, LMHA. "Its mission to help low-income public housing residents and families secure higher-paying jobs and work towards achieving financial self-sufficiency aligns with our Strategic Planning Goals, over the next five years, to provide pathways to a better quality of life for our residents," said Simpson. "The Jobs Plus Initiative Grant is a first for Toledo Lucas County and a critical component in creating a framework for building self-sufficiency in our residents' lives, as well as expanding our partnership with HUD and the community.”