Tens of thousands of people applied, but unfortunately, there is not enough money to help everyone.
So how is it decided who will receive money? All applicants will be put into a drawing and picked randomly, but those who are considered to be the "most vulnerable," according to past censuses, will have a 50% higher chance of being selected.
This is how it will work. Money will be distributed throughout the county, providing $1,200 for households of one to four residents and $1,500 for households with five people or more. The HCCRF will also target those in communities who are deemed to be struggling the most such as households below 60% of the Area Median Income (AMI), victims of domestic violence, youth aged out of foster care, and people in homeless shelters.
The $30 million fund, which was approved in mid-May, was established to help struggling residents in the midst of the pandemic.
Money from the Harris County COVID-19 Relief Fund (HCCRF) is expected to help between 20,000 and 25,000 families pay for rent, food, medical care, child care, and other basic needs.
Those who applied should be contacted either via email or by phone.
Last week, residents could apply for funding, but some reported difficulties during the process.
As people applied, ABC13 received calls from viewers saying they received messages about technical difficulties or that the phone lines to apply were down.
Still, officials have said they would like to see two rounds of disbursements. It will be managed by the Greater Houston Community Foundation.
The fund will continue to share updates about its first and second phases of funding on its website. Those who are still looking for assistance are encouraged to call 211 Texas/United Way helpline to find an organization in their geographic region.
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