Forsyth County Department of Social Services held an appreciation luncheon for County staff who worked on the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) on March 15.
In the last two years, the program distributed $45 million in rental and/or utility assistance to help 6,907 local households. Payments were made directly to landlords and utility companies to help residents avoid eviction.
“We put 45 million back into the community, you all did that,” said DSS Division Director Mia Stockton.
ERAP was established by the United States Department of Treasury to prevent evictions due to the pandemic and applications were accepted locally from April 5, 2021 to June 21, 2022. Social Services worked with The City of Winston-Salem for the program. They received technical assistance from the County’s Management Information Systems (MIS) and MapForsyth Departments.
“I truly believe because of what we were able to do, we have a lot of evictions that were avoided, a lot of children that were able to stay in their homes, as well as the adults,” said DSS Director Christine Dowdell. “I thank you on behalf of the residents, I thank for what you do.”
Dowdell said she was thankful that Forsyth County Commissioners and County management supported ERAP for local residents.
Deputy County Manger and Health and Human Services Director Shontell Robinson said that Social Services staff mobilized quickly to implement ERAP and has put in countless hours so that it could serve thousands of local families.
“I know it’s been a long two years and this has been quite the challenge in the height of COVID,” said Robinson. “Every single one of you rose to the occasion and worked as a team to get this done. I know this was a huge undertaking, and I do not take that for granted.”
For more information on ERAP, visit https://forsyth.cc/erap/.
To view more photos from the luncheon, visit https://flic.kr/s/aHBqjAvT52.