City of Cambridge Distributes nearly $1 Million from Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund and will Continue Accepting Applications through May 15

Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui and City Manager Louis A. DePasquale announced today that the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund has distributed nearly $1 million to 629 Cambridge residents and families financially impacted by the COVID-19 public health crisis. More than 600 additional applications remain pending, and the City estimates it will distribute an additional $2.6 million in the coming weeks. Residents who are hoping to receive assistance from the Fund must apply by 5:00 p.m. on May 15. 

“Since activating this fund, our goal has been to quickly provide relief to residents who are struggling to cover housing-related expenses,” said Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui. “To date, we have helped hundreds of individuals and families with one month of expenses. But we also understand that their needs extend beyond just one month. I am incredibly proud that, as of today, we are expanding our support to provide two months of housing support assistance, in total, for current and future applicants. I want to thank each donor who has made this critical assistance possible.”

The Fund will continue prioritizing applicants who demonstrate a loss of income as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Individuals and families who received only one month of support in April will automatically receive a second payment over the next week.With these new guidelines, the Fundestimates that it will supply over 1,600 households with two months of housing assistance.

“The dedication and professionalism demonstrated by the more than 60 City staff members who are supporting the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund effort has been incredible, and their work illustrates the passion our employees have for serving the public,” said City Manager Louis A. DePasquale. “I want to thank Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui for her leadership and commitment to ensuring that donations to the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund are being distributed to support individuals and families in our community who are experiencing financial hardship.”

The Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund was developed to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 public health crisis. Through the generosity of donors,the Fund has raised more than $3.6 million to date.In its first 24 days of operation, the Fund received nearly 1,300 applications, 93 percent of whom are Cambridge tenants and seven percent of whom are homeowners through the City’s Affordable Homeownership Program. Half of applicants live in subsidized or public housing

For households who do not apply by May 15, the City is planning to leverage other federal, state and local resources that can be utilized to support housing assistance to provide further relief to residents as the crisis continues. Applications for the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund may reopen if additional donations are secured to sustain the Fund.

Applicants can apply to the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund through the online application or by calling the Phone Assistance Line at 617-349-9797. In addition to English, the Phone Assistance Line offers multilingual support in Amharic, Arabic, Bangla, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and Spanish, with additional language support provided on an as-needed basis. 

Donations to the Fund can continue to be made at www.cambridgema.gov/mayorsdisasterrelieffund     

For additional information on submitting applications to the Mayor’s Disaster Relief Fund, visit www.cambridgema.gov/mayorsfund.  

Page was posted on 5/6/2020 5:54 PM
Page was last modified on 5/6/2020 6:15 PM
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