The Housing Opportunity Foundation awarded 17 area local nonprofits and seven area Habitat for Humanity agencies totaling $76,607.66 through the annual Realtor-directed Habitat Support and Community Grants Programs. This includes a $15,107.66 donation to A Child’s Place, raised during the foundation’s second annual Strides for Shelter 5K & Fun run. The foundation serves as the charitable arm of the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association and is dedicated to making a difference in the community by creating housing opportunities, promoting homeownership, and positioning and educating Realtors as leaders.
The Community Grants Program supports area organizations that address unmet housing needs in Mecklenburg and Iredell counties, while the Habitat Support Program is a way to assist area Habitats that are meeting crucial housing needs for low-to-moderate income families. Since the inception of the Habitat Support Program 11 years ago and the Community Grants Program nine years ago, Realtor members have distributed a total of $383,107.66 to area organizations.
“The beauty of the community grants program is that we are funding a number of projects that our members volunteer with already. Many of these organizations have simple needs from the purchase of a new beds for children, to providing resources to care for homeless families, to bus fare for residents of a local domestic violence shelter – these two grant programs are just one of the many ways we can assist those nonprofits that are working to address unmet housing needs in Mecklenburg and Iredell Counties,” said Association/CarolinaMLS President Roger Parham.
Launched in 2009, the Community and Habitat Grants Program awards funds annually to area nonprofits. Applications are rated according to community impact, project feasibility, fiscal strength and Realtor support. Ten panel members were appointed to take part in the 2017 panel process, including members of the Diversity Council, Executive Committee, Leadership Academy, Fair and Affordable Housing Advisory Group, Housing Opportunity Foundation Committee, and association staff.
Funds are restricted and must be used by December 31, 2017. Funds cannot be used for capital costs, staff/administrative expenses or debt reduction.