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Affordable Housing Developer Helps Low-Income Families During COVID-19

AHC Inc.’s resident services team helped feed over 3,000 families and secured more than $2.3 million in rental assistance for residents.

Arlington, Va.-based affordable housing developer AHC Inc. and its subsidiary AHC Management, sprang into action beginning last spring to help residents suffering from the effects of the pandemic. AHC’s Resident Services team, with support from the property management arm, AHC Management, provided substantial food and financial assistance to more than 3,000 families in Maryland and Virginia.

As the pandemic took hold, AHC Inc.’s Resident Services team pivoted to launch its own COVID-19 Residents Relief program. Throughout 2020, the program helped secure approximately $2.3 million in rental assistance for affordable-housing residents and continues to offer extended payment plans.

“In the first few months of the COVID-19 pandemic, we had a 50 percent increase in requests for food assistance from our residents,” said Susan Davidson, AHC Resident Services Director. “To meet this increased need, AHC established 18 more food distribution sites for its residents in addition to the six sites we typically operate in Maryland and Virginia.”

To build its reach, Resident Services worked with 24 community partners, many of whom stepped up to help neighbors in need, including the Columbia Pike Revitalization Organization and local farmers markets, Amazon, Maryland Food Bank, World Central Kitchen and AFAC.

The company has also distributed grocery gift cards to nearly 3,000 families in need thanks to generous individual donations and organizations such as the Arlington Community Foundation and Volunteer Arlington.

The relief initiatives are being implemented by AHC’s 32-member Resident Services department, which helps residents in four key areas: Education, Health & Wellness, Financial Wellness and Community Building.

“COVID turned everyone’s lives upside down and especially those of our residents,” said Davidson. “Our team pivoted immediately to focus our efforts on addressing the needs of the residents as they were in the moment, and that included helping families access federal and local dollars to pay their rent and to meet some basic needs.”

In addition to the COVID-19 Residents Relief efforts, AHC’s Resident Services team provides year-round resources, such as after-school programs, college and career readiness initiatives, summer camps, job readiness mentorship, eviction prevention and social services assistance.

Jennifer Endo, Vice President of Community Relations said, “We believe that we are more than a company — we are a community. Everyone on the AHC team is passionate about providing our residents the best environment to lead happy and healthy lives. Our Resident Services program is the embodiment of that passion.”