Alleviating Foreclosure the AmeriCorps Way

[This is a guest post by Kenita Nichols, a member of the Michigan Foreclosure Corps.]

Through the years, AmeriCorps has become synonymous with making a difference in the lives of those around you.  With such an encompassing vision for benevolence to all human beings, one could only expect an outpouring of support to come in the form of the Michigan Foreclosure Corps.

Michigan as a state was once highly identifiable by its link to the booming automotive industry.  In the recent economic downturn, Michigan has become the first state in 25 years to suffer an unemployment rate exceeding 15%.  Battered by the collapse of the auto industry, the stock market, and the housing crisis, many Michigan residents continue to be displaced.  Eviction or foreclosure pushes people into unfamiliar territory.

The Michigan Foreclosure Corps began serving on September 28, 2009 to address the problems foreclosed homeowners face.  In partnership with the Michigan Foreclosure Task Force, Community Economic Development Association of Michigan (CEDAM), and the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness, 20 AmeriCorps members have been placed at nonprofit foreclosure counseling agencies across Michigan.  Each member will provide foreclosure prevention support services, community outreach, educational workshops, and innovative approaches to facilitate a decrease in the amount of foreclosed homes.

AmeriCorps Orientation
AmeriCorps Orientation, October 2009

The Michigan Foreclosure Corps serves both the urban and rural parts of Michigan; each non-profit foreclosure agency specializes in the needs respective to the areas they service.  AmeriCorps members possess the motivation and commitment to create social change through intensive community service.

Michigan Foreclosure Corps AmeriCorps members are also working with certified housing counselors.  Counselors work with homeowners and lenders to stop foreclosure and develop plans to put them back on the path of financial stability.  Understanding the value of home ownership, equity, and budgeting are vital tools the Corps will utilize to place families back on track in the state of Michigan.

Expand this post for a list of our service sites.

Abayomi CDC

Bay Area Housing

Community Action Agency of Jackson, Lenawee & Hillsdale Counties

Center for Financial Health

Housing Opportunities Made Equal of Mackinac County

Inner City Christian Federation

Lighthouse CDC – Detroit

Mission of Peace – Flint

Montmorency Area Rural Community Housing dba/Rural Michigan CDC

MSU Extension – Clare

MSU Extension – Ionia

MSU Extension – Macomb

MSU Extension – Washtenaw

Neighborhoods Inc of Battle Creek

Northeast Michigan Affordable Housing (NEMAH)

Northern Homes CDC

Northwest Michigan Community Action Agency

Southwest Michigan Community Action Agency

United Community Housing Coalition

Wayne Metro Community Action Agency