Eviction Diversion Work Group urges Texomans to get the word out about Texas Rent Relief Program

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — A group of individuals and organizations raising awareness for rent relief said there is money left to help more people.

That’s why they are asking you to spread the word about Texas Rent Relief.

According to the Texas Rent Relief Program website, more than 650 people have received assistance in Wichita County.

Wichita Falls Housing Authority’s Director Donna Piper said they are a part of that number.

“We had an average of anywhere from 160 to 200 people that were at the beginning of the pandemic behind on rent,” Piper said.

Piper said many of those tenants have reaped the benefits of the program.

“I can tell you that, personally, that I know of at least 19 people that have been helped with Texas rent relief and we currently have six pending,” Piper said.

Piper said that doesn’t mean others may have gotten the money directly to pay their rent.

However, of that almost 200 people Piper mentioned earlier, she said 65 people are still behind and it’s for this reason why the Eviction Diversion Work Group is urging Texomans to get the word out.

Faith Mission’s Steve Sparks said this is their way of getting ahead of homelessness in our communities.

“Anytime someone gets evicted from their home that’s a terrible thing, but even compounded on top of that, is the fact that now that eviction follows them everywhere they go and it makes it harder for them to get housing down the road so we want to prevent eviction as much as we possibly can so they don’t end up in a shelter like ours,” Sparks said.

Sparks said getting the help is easy, as of Monday 658 households have received some relief in Wichita County, that’s more than $397 million.

He said the hardest part is finding out how many people have been affected by this and that’s where residents come in.

“If you know of anybody who is behind on their rent and their reason is COVID-related then this program is for them,” Sparks said.

In doing this, the Eviction Diversion Work Group hopes to prevent homelessness, one household at a time.

Piper said the most common concern people have is if they qualify.

There are pretty simple steps, follow this link to find out how.

If you need additional help visit the Texas Rent Relief Application Clinic:

  • Where: Paul Erwin Center – 115 East Wichita Street
  • When: Every Tuesday and Thursday
  • Time: 9:00 a.m. and Noon
  • Make an appointment: 940-217-2515 (with Alexis Ammons)

What do you need to bring:

  • Government-issued identification
  • Proof of income
  • copy of your lease agreement

There will be individuals ready to help answer your questions and complete the application.

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