Tabor Community Services announced today that it was named a 2018 recipient of $125,000 in Pennsylvania Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement (PHARE) funding. Managed by Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, PHARE funds are generated from impact fees collected from natural gas companies operating in the state as well as a portion of the realty transfer tax and money from the National Housing Trust Fund. PHARE grant funds support housing and community development initiatives across Pennsylvania. Tabor will use the $125,000 to establish a new service to prevent eviction from rental housing and the long-term housing and financial instability eviction can create for affected households.
The new eviction prevention service will be provided at Tabor’s Ann B. Barshinger Financial Empowerment Center in the City of Lancaster and at its satellite centers throughout the County, where Tabor provides financial counseling and education in partnership with other human service providers. It will serve Lancaster County low- and moderate-income residents struggling to pay their rent and at risk of losing their housing through eviction. Participants will receive one-on-one housing counseling and financial coaching to restore and maximize their financial and housing stability and, when needed to maintain housing, one-time financial assistance to pay rental arrears if clients can continue paying on their own. As appropriate, staff will also confer with landlords on behalf of their clients.
Tabor developed this new service in response to the growing problem of eviction and its damaging impact on individuals and families. Between 1995 and 2016 the number of court-issued eviction orders in Lancaster County increased by an alarming 66%. In recent years researchers have found that eviction causes ongoing financial, employment, and personal instability for those who experience it, with a disproportionate impact on children. An eviction, regardless of its cause, becomes a barrier to obtaining decent affordable housing and achieving financial stability for many years to come.
Founded in 1968, Tabor is a non-profit human services agency providing comprehensive housing counseling, financial counseling and education, and supportive housing programs and services for Lancaster County residents. Tabor’s 18 programs serve over 5,000 people annually. Tabor’s Ann B. Barshinger Financial Empowerment Center provides one-on-one counseling and group workshops designed to equip people with the knowledge and skills needed to work through financial challenges and build financial stability for the future.
More information on the 2018 PHARE awards is included in Pennsylvania Governor Wolf’s announcement, click here and at PHFA’s website.
For more information on Tabor and the Ann B. Barshinger Financial Empowerment Center for Lancaster County, please visit www.tabornet.org. ■