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United Way Houses offer application help for LeeCARES aid

By Staff | Jul 28, 2020

United Way is partnering with Lee County to offer application sites for Lee residents seeking help with rent, mortgage or utility payments through the Individual Assistance Program. Residents can apply for assistance at Lee County United Way Houses, in collaboration with United Way Partner Agencies.

The participating United Way Houses are:

– Charleston Park, inside Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida, at 2541 Charleston Park Drive, Alva; Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. No appointment necessary; walk-ins accepted.

– East United Way House, led by the Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida, at 4040 Palm Beach Blvd., Fort Myers; Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 8 a.m. to noon. For an appointment, call Hannah Arteaga at 239-313-7720.

– Sanibel/Captiva United Way House, led by F.I.S.H. of Sanibel-Captiva, at 2430-B Periwinkle Way, Sanibel; Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. For an appointment, call Nitza Lopez at 239-472-4775.

– Harlem Heights United Way Houses, within The Heights Center, at 15570 Hagie Drive, Fort Myers; Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For an appointment, call Nancy Sanchez at 239-482-7706.

– Lehigh United Way House, inside Lehigh Community Services, at 201 Plaza Drive, Suite 103, Lehigh Acres; Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 1:30 to 4 p.m. For an appointment, call 239-369-5818.

– MLK United Way House, inside Community Cooperative, at 3420 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Fort Myers; from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. No appointment necessary; walk-ins accepted.

Social distancing and safety measures will be in effect at each location.

The documents applicants will need to file an application:

– Photo ID for head of household

– Income documentation

– Proof of loss of income

– Lease or most recent mortgage statement

– Most recent utility bills (water and electric only)

The application window for the Individual Assistance Program reopened on July 27.

The application link can be found at www.LeeFLCares.

Application instructions are available in Spanish by calling 239-LEE-CARES (533-2273) from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays. Applicants without Internet access can also contact the same number.

The Lee County Board of County Commissioners dedicated $22 million to the initial phase of the Individual Assistance Program; payments began being disbursed in June.

Under the program, assistance with rent, mortgage or utilities (water and electric) may be provided if an individual has an unexpected loss of income due to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ Safer at Home Order, including loss of job or reduced work hours. Payment for those who qualify are made directly to the landlord, mortgage company and/or utility company. Household income must be less than $55,100 a year for a household of four, or up to $72,750 for a household of eight at the time of application. Assistance is limited to only one-time per household and assistance cannot exceed $2,000.

The program is one of five that the BOCC approved for using funds from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Lee County is investing $57.5 million in human and business services to provide immediate assistance for individuals, families and businesses.

For more information, visit www.LeeFLcares.com.