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Palm Beach County using mobile bus to help people in need of rental assistance

'There’s a whole lot of help you just have to ask,' says a volunteer
Posted at 6:28 PM, Jun 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-18 18:28:54-04

RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — Outside of the Feeding Hope Village in Riviera Beach, there’s a humming sound of a bus that’s hard to miss because onboard is a ticket to help.

“I see a lot of stuff,” Michelle Redding said. “It’s hard for a lot of people.”

West Palm Beach resident Michelle Redding is typically at the outreach center on Wednesdays to volunteer inside at the food pantry.

She knows firsthand what it’s like to struggle to make ends meet.

“I lost my job that’s why I’m out here trying to get my light bill paid,” Redding said.

This is her first chance to apply for assistance through Palm Beach County’s emergency rental assistance program.

“I don’t have a computer,” she said. “I don’t know too much about how to use a computer,” she said.

Applications for the program are only accepted online. The mobile bus with WiFi and internet is a lifeline.

“We know that there are a number of individuals who are still struggling,” she added.

James Green is the Executive Director of the Palm Beach County Community Services department.

“There was $45.2 million dollars allocated to Palm Beach County, so far we’ve spent maybe over $12 million dollars,” he said.

Green said they launched the rental assistance program in March. Now they are partnering with local organizations to bring the applications directly to the people who need them most.

“With the moratorium being lifted at the end of the month we know there will be thousands more who are facing eviction,” he said. “So, we want to make sure we are being as proactive as possible to get services to the individuals in need.”

Green said they have until September to disburse the funds but can apply for a 3-month extension if needed.

“There is help out here in the world,” Redding said. “There’s a whole lot of help you just have to ask.”

If you need rental assistance, click here.