LIFT Foundation receives grant for housing homeless individuals

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The grant will specifically assist the LIFT Foundation in housing those without homes in a local motel this winter and spring ahead of LIFT’s planned project to convert the motel into 60 affordable studio apartments for permanent housing. Courtesy LIFT Foundation

The LIFT Foundation recently received a grant from the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation to help the organization cover the cost of housing individuals experiencing homelessness this winter.

LIFT — a Kalamazoo-based nonprofit housing provider — said it received a grant of an undisclosed amount from the Irving S. Gilmore Foundation to address homelessness in Kalamazoo.

The grant will specifically assist the LIFT Foundation in housing those without homes in a local motel this winter and spring ahead of LIFT’s planned project to convert the motel into 60 affordable studio apartments for permanent housing.

Lisa Willcutt courtesy LIFT Foundation

Lisa Willcutt, property supervisor for LIFT Foundation and vice president of Lockhart Management & Consulting, which is a contractor and service provider for LIFT, said the Gilmore Foundation’s grant is aimed at “providing an alternative to the encampments for persons who are experiencing homelessness.”

“LIFT is using this time to assist persons who are homeless (the first part of the project) while it finalizes architectural and building plans with the city in order to convert the building to affordable housing (the second part of the project). Additional funding for the conversion piece is still needed,” she said.

Renovation of the hotel is set to begin this spring with the goal of wrapping up construction by the end of 2021. The project’s architect is InForm Architecture, and the contractor is CSM Group, both based in Kalamazoo.

Services will be made available to residents to help them transition to and be successful in their housing, LIFT said.

“LIFT is excited about the opportunity to create affordable housing in a short timeframe and with the support of so many community partners,” Willcutt said.

LIFT

Founded in 1966, the LIFT Foundation is a nonprofit housing provider and community resource for West Michigan. It oversees management of quality, affordable housing for people with disabilities, the elderly and those with low incomes.

Operated by a volunteer board of directors, the goal of LIFT is to “create greater stability for individuals and families who want to improve their quality of life.”

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