Richmond Mayor Tom Butt raising money on GoFundMe to house homeless families free for 1 year - ABC7 San Francisco (abc7news.com)
Today, we accepted a check for $10,000 from SimsMetal, which matched another $10,000 from Council of Industries members. That will provide housing for a homeless family for a year.
Figure 1 - Mayor Tom Butt accepts $10,000 check for SimsMetal Regional Operations Director Thibaut Ducy and West Region PR & Governmental Affairs Manager Jill Rodby
Although willing landlords are hard to find, we are chipping away at housing homeless families.
Tyneisha has been approved for a 2-bedroom apartment at East Bay Asian Local Development Corporation. The building is Creekside Apartments on Richmond Avenue in Oakland. The rent is $1,800/month, which Tyneisha will be paying by herself, but the Mayors Housing First Project will pay her move-in deposit of $1,919.00. Homeless since December; Tyneisha and her children, 2 and 12, became homeless in December. The children are currently staying with their grandmother. Tyneisha works full time at Rubicon Landscaping and part time as a child-care provider at 4Cs Of Alameda County and is currently living in her car.
Darylicia and her three children and her sister-in-law and her two children will be moving into a 4-bedroom unit that she will share with her sister-in-law, each be responsible for half the rent. The Mayor’s Housing First Project will pay Darylicia's share, $1400/month for one year. The two families will share the cost of utilities. Darrylicia and her children became homeless in December. They are currently living in the sister-in-law’s 2-bedroom apartment in Richmond -- two adults and five children total. Rubicon is providing counseling, job training and placement for Darrylicia.
To support the Mayor’s Housing First Project, in partnership with Richmond Rotary:
- Write a check to Mayor’s Community Fund at Richmond Community Foundation. Mail to Tom Butt, Mayor, City of Richmond, 450 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond CA. It takes about $20,000 to house a family for a year, so be generous!
- You can donate at GoFundMe https://gofund.me/451b7bb2.
- If you are a landlord with available units, contact me directly via email, firstname.lastname@example.org.
I want to thank my hard-working Richmond Rotary colleagues and the Richmond Community Foundation for providing critical logistical support for this project, including screening clients, collecting furniture, handling move-ins and setting up services and support.
Today’s news from ABC7:
BUILDING A BETTER BAY AREA
Richmond mayor is paying for 1 year of rent to help end homeless crisis
By Luz Pena
Tuesday, April 12, 2022 8:16PM
Richmond Mayor Tom Butt is fighting the homeless crisis by raising funds to pay for a year of rent to help those transitioning from homelessness.
RICHMOND, Calif. (KGO) -- The Mayor of Richmond is introducing a new way to tackle the homeless crisis in his city. He is raising funds to help those transitioning from homelessness by paying for one year of rent.
The word "home" carries a deep meaning for Corliss Rollins. She was homeless for six years after being evicted from her home in Alameda for falling $200 short on rent.
"Three days later the sheriff came and put me and not just my son, but me and all of my kids. I have four kids total," said Corliss Rollins and added, "That is how my homelessness started."
For half a decade Corliss tried to find housing, but her income wasn't enough for any landlord to approve her. One of her friends gifted an RV.
"It seems like I was just stuck there," said Corliss and added, "It's just hard living in a trailer with no water and constantly moving around. I don't know. It's just hard. I don't wish homelessness on anybody."
A month ago, that changed when she got the keys to her apartment.
"I just felt overwhelmed. I was happy and now every time I leave to work and come back when I stick the key I just get the same feeling. Just overwhelmed," said Corliss.
The group behind helping Corliss is the Mayor of Richmond and the Rotary Club. Close to two months ago they took matters into their own hands and tackled the homeless crisis differently by getting single moms like Corliss out of the RVs and paying one year of rent.
"The city of Richmond spent a million and a half dollars servicing two RV camps. They could've put 100 people in an apartment for a year for that money. So, I decided to quit working with all the City of Richmond programs, and it turned out I had some money that I have raised over the years. The Mayor’s Community Fund. I partnered up with the Richmond Rotary club and what we are doing is taking people out of the RV camps," said Richmond Mayor Tom Butt.
Mayor Butt says the biggest challenge is getting landlords to agree.
"We really need landlords who will take a leap of faith and take a year's rent in advance and agree to house a previously homeless person," said Mayor Butt.
Corliss is now planning to gift her RV to another person in need.
"I just plan to give it to somebody that is in that situation if they want it. Not sell it to them, not rent to them, but give it to them. It's going to be hard to pick somebody but I'm going to pick somebody," said Corliss.
This is not a city run-program, this is an initiative from the Mayor himself. Mayor Butt is taking funds from the Mayors community fund and asking small business owners to help him raise money to house as many homeless families as possible.
If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live
Mayor Butt set up a GoFundme for the community to help raise funds as well.
Mayor Butt believes this is the best approach to end homelessness and is urging cities to re-allocate their funds and find housing for families with that money.
Another aspect of the program is that families get resources to find jobs.