CMHA named Central Ohio's Healthiest Employer by Columbus Business First
On Tuesday March 6, CMHA was named Central Ohio's Healthiest Employer of 2017 by a mid-sized company. This is the second year running that CMHA has taken home the award. In 2017 we had over 80% engagement in our Health + Wellness program. We believe that there is a direct correlation between healthy and happy staff and high quality service for our clients, partners, and community. We are very proud of this acknowledgement and will continue to encourage physical and mental well-being through education, fitness options, and work life balance.
Smoking Cessation Grant Awardee
Franklin County Public Health (FCPH) has collaborated with CMHA and others to decrease the number of smokers in Franklin County. The Ohio Department of Health Community Cessation Initiative has awarded FCPH, CMHA, and other local organizations a grant of over 1.5 million, for a 3-year period to help Franklin County residents stop smoking.
Franklin County Public Health states, "the long-term objective of the grant is to increase by 15 percent the number of tobacco users that attempt to quit with a specific emphasis on pregnant women, individuals with mental health illness, and individuals with low socioeconomic status."
CMHA will leverage the work of this grant with our efforts around HUD's Smoke Free Initiative, requiring all public housing communities to be smoke free by July 31, 2018.
Chief Operating Officer, Bryan Brown of CMHA said, "We look forward to working with FCPH by hosting a community health educator to help residents in their attempts to become smoke-free.
For more information, as it becomes available visit: http://www.myfcph.org/tobacco
CMHA, OHFA, and others collaborate on program to combat infant mortality
During the holidays we received notice that CMHA, in partnership with Celebrate One, was awarded a $1 million grant by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency to demonstrate rental assistance as an intervention to provide high quality stable housing to reduce infant mortality.
The one million funded will expand housing opportunities for extremely low-income households with pregnant women, new mothers, or infants within their first year of life.
CMHA will administer 10 newly renovated units of rental assistance at our Sawyer Manor and Trevitt Heights properties on the Near East Side.
The final report of this program will be submitted to the Ohio Commission on Infant Mortality. Affordable housing matters and we intend to prove it.
Sawyer and Trevitt RAD Rehab
Sawyer Manor and Trevitt Heights, two former public housing properties on the Near East Side, are starting to have a new look thanks to the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program.
RAD is a program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that allows public housing authorities to convert their properties from public housing subsidy to Section 8 project-based-subsidy. CMHA has decided to convert all of our public housing portfolio through RAD over the next few years.
The biggest benefit of RAD is that it gives CMHA the ability to use the low-income housing tax credit(LIHTC) program, and other financing sources, to make much-needed repairs and upgrades to the properties. At Sawyer & Trevitt, CMHA is spending $30,000 per unit on rehab, which will include new flooring, bathroom, and kitchen upgrades, as well as other units to make the units more energy efficient.
Rehab work at some of the 253 units at Sawyer & Trevitt has already been completed, and as the renovations continue you can feel the excitement in the air as residents await their new homes.
Construction crews are eyeing a summer 2018 finish date.
New Used for a Near East Side Landmark
Spring 2018, CMHA will begin our renovation of the former Columbus Early Learning Center building, located at 162 North Ohio Avenue on the Near East Side.
The building was built in 1917 and was the first early education center for African Americans in Franklin County.
When renovations are complete, the building will contain 10 one and two bedroom, market-rate apartments.
These new units will complement the 440 mixed-income units we are building at Legacy Pointe at Poindexter as part of our Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grant.
This unique project will add another dimension to CMHA's diverse and growing portfolio.
CMHA to expand on success of Scholar House for Phase 3
Youth aging out of foster care are some of the most vulnerable residents of our community. That's why CMHA will be expanding our Scholar House development on the Near East Side to provide housing opportunities for these residents.
We will be working with Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing, Action Ohio, The Ohio Youth Advisory Board, and others to submit a low-income housing tax credit application this coming February to help finance this project.
Much like the first two phases at Scholar House, Phase 3 will bring together education and housing services.
"CMHA is committed to have former foster youth input throughout this process," said Bethany Hahn-Ambrosius, program analyst at CMHA.
"We have met with Foster Alums and their representatives on several occasions to gain input on the physical development as well as services that should be provided to meet the needs of this unique population. Their feedback is helping to shape the design of the building and structure of the wraparound services to ensure success for the Scholars.
Stay tuned for more information.