WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- Legal Services of the Hudson Valley recently received a grant of almost $14,000 from the MBIA Foundation in Purchase.
The grant monies will be used to help support the non-profit’s Housing Stability Program for Westchester Families.
“We are truly honored to partner with our friends at the MBIA Foundation to assist our less-fortunate neighbors improve their lives and continue to provide shelter for their families,” said LSHV’s Chief Development Officer, Tom Gabriel. “Last year, Legal Services of the Hudson Valley positively impacted the lives of more than 32,500 people throughout our seven-county service area, and we would not be able to do so without the MBIA Foundation’s continued support.”
Through the program, LSHV assists low-income Westchester residents with foreclosure counseling, mortgage modification and eviction prevention to ensure their rights are preserved.
With the gap separating those who can and cannot afford legal representation widening each day, LSHV fights to keep thousands of low-income families in their homes and prevent foreclosures and halt evictions, preserving the most basic necessity of life -- shelter -- for as many families and individuals as possible, Gabriel said.
Their services are available to clients living at/or below 200 percent of Federal Poverty Income Guideline level or $48,600 for a family of four. In Westchester alone, 226,456 people live at/or below the level.
These low-income residents desperately need civil legal services to advocate and fight for their basic human rights. Furthermore, the need is especially stark for children in Westchester, where 13 percent of children (29,319) live in poverty and one in four children live at/or below the poverty level, Gabriel said.
Children living in poverty are vulnerable and voiceless when their basic rights to family/home safety and security, disability services, healthcare, education and benefits are threatened or removed. Studies have shown this repetition of volatility hinders children living in poverty from developing a sense of themselves as free individuals capable of making choices and acting on them to shape their lives, he added.