Fresh Start Program now accepting applications for rent assistance

Local News

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- The Arkansas Community Action Agencies Association recently received 10 million dollars in federal grant funds to help pay rent for those families who are struggling.

“We received a total of 10 million dollars, which sounds like a lot of money but we anticipate the money is going to go extremely quickly,” said Terry Bearden, Executive Director of ACAAA.

The Fresh Start Program is now accepting applications to ‘Stop the spread of evictions.’

This program is aimed at helping Arkansans who have fallen behind on rent, landlords and anyone who has become homeless in the last 30 days.

“As a result of the CDC Moratorium on evictions that while that was going to slow down the number of evictions, there was no monetary support,” said Bearden.

Terry Bearden the Executive Director of the Arkansas Community Action Agencies Association said the 10 million dollars is expected to help around 8,000 households in the natural state but more than 130,000 houses are at risk of being evicted due to past due rent.

“So, when you think about 8500 households as opposed to 130,000 plus, this is really just a drop in the bucket,” said Bearden.

With the Fresh Start Program, you can get help with up to two and a half months of rent.

To be eligible you must meet criteria, such as, be a full-time Arkansas resident and have an income at or below the area median income.

Bearden said the program will last as long as the funds are available.

“I don’t think the entire pot of money will make it through mid-December. I think we will be out of funds in four to six weeks. That’s just a guess based upon the pent-up need. I really think this money is going to be gone in weeks,” said Bearden.

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