The Merrimack has announced the purchase of $14,000 in tax credits through the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority (CDFA) in support of the Friends Program.
This pledge is in addition to The Merrimack’s $30,000 CDFA tax credit purchase earlier this year. The $44,000 in support provides aid and relief for families experiencing homelessness within Greater Concord. Funds will go toward the organization’s Home Stretch campaign, a three-part shelter expansion and renovation project.
The Home Stretch campaign will allow the Friends Program to serve more families in an environment designed to support their goal of finding and sustaining long‑term housing. The campaign aims to increase the number of families that can be housed in the emergency shelter each year, and to provide trauma-informed spaces intended to ease, comfort and decrease the emotional stress families experience transitioning into a shelter. It will offer a temporary living situation that compliments the support already provided by Friends Program services, with the understanding that the closer to “home” a temporary space feels, the easier it is for families, especially children, to settle in and begin the process of rebuilding their lives.
“We are grateful for the good work that the Friends Program provides in our community and we’re happy to continue our commitment to supporting them in any way that we can,” said Linda Lorden, President of Merrimack County Savings Bank. “Friends’ Emergency Housing Program will create a safe place that promotes healing, as well as a sense of control, privacy and confidentiality for guests. We understand that people trying to seek refuge from crisis require as much support and kindness as possible, and we are happy to help Friends offer them the services and resources they need most.”
“We are very grateful to The Merrimack for believing in this project and for their continued support,” said Nancy Paul, Executive Director of the Friends Program. “Homelessness is a traumatic experience and individuals often come to us having also experienced physical, mental or emotional abuse. Their help will go a long way in making our emergency shelter as comforting as possible for families in distressing, crisis situations. We can’t thank The Merrimack enough for contributing to the Home Stretch campaign.”
The Friends Program recruits, trains and manages volunteers to meet community needs in Greater Concord and surrounding towns. Their mission of strengthening communities by building relationships that empower people, encourage service and restore faith in the human spirit is achieved through their four distinct programs for Emergency Housing, Fostering Grandparents, Senior Volunteerism and Youth Mentoring. Go to friendsprogram.org for more information.