Homeless shelter for Montcalm, Ionia counties gets $500,000 grant

BY Thursday, April 08, 2021 08:58pm

Have Mercy, the state-funded shelter for Montcalm and Ionia counties, recently received a $500,000 grant through the Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis as well as $5,000 from Mercantile Bank of Michigan.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis serves regulated financial institutions in Indiana and Michigan. Its competitive Affordable Housing Program grants can be used for the construction or renovation of affordable housing. With the grant, Have Mercy will be able to expand its services to meet the growing need for housing and other services to aid the homeless population in the counties it serves.

“We are absolutely thrilled to be chosen for funding on this project,” Have Mercy Executive Director Kim Cain said in a statement. “It’s unusual for rural agencies to receive this type of funding, but Mercantile Bank understood the dramatic increase in need and partnered with us to improve the lives of those struggling with homelessness. We’re grateful to them and to the Federal Home Loan Bank of Indianapolis for helping us address a growing problem for our community.”

Greenville-based Have Mercy provides long-term shelter to families and individuals experiencing homelesses. The religious nonprofit is part of the Balance of State Continuum of Care, which covers 63 counties in Michigan.

Mercantile Bank has partnered with several nonprofits to help them obtain affordable housing grants, but this is the first time the bank helped with an organization in Montcalm and Ionia counties, said Sonali Allen, chief compliance and community investment officer at Mercantile Bank.

“It is an inescapable fact that financial instability as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic is prevalent, and as such there is an increased demand in local homeless shelters,” Allen said in a statement. “As a community partner we recognize the important role we play in helping to stabilize these conditions.”

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