GSDC Southwest REACH Center receives Chicago Community Trust grant
The Chicago Community Trust recently awarded Greater Southwest Development Corporation’s Southwest REACH Center with a $50,000 Housing Presentation and Foreclosure Prevention grant to assist in their counseling efforts for the 2013 year.
The REACH Center was awarded the grant for their work with Chicago’s southwest neighborhood.
For the last five years, the REACH center has been helping families on the southwest side by offering free financial counseling for pre and post housing purchases and for foreclosures.
“Families are where because they are behind on their home payments or are unemployed,” Southwest REACH Center Director Ruth DiDiana said. “We bundle our services so they have all the programs they need. I believe we are the only center in Illinois that offers those duel core trainings.”
Expanding on their 1:1 on counseling, the REACH center offers income support to families.
“When families come in we see if they are eligible for public benefits, ” DiDiana said. “We help them receiving income support and then offer employment and financial counseling to help them clean up their credit too.”
Additionally, as part of the employment counseling, the center offers computer classes to help families get the training they need to find jobs. When classes are not session the computer lab is open to the public, making it the only public computer lab, aside from Chicago Public Libraries, in the southwest area.
The center has now taken to the streets and has begun going out into neighborhoods and networking within the communities, making them aware of the services available.
“We are working to get families working,” DiDiana said.
This is the first time the REACH Center has received a grant from the Chicago Community Trust. They plan to use the grant to help incorporate ESL classes to the center, as well as additional computer programs.
All services are free, those looking access these services must be 18 years or older. There are no other requirements. For more information, call 773-735-6727
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