Farmers & Merchants Bank Awarded $45,000 In Grants For Thomas House Family Shelter And Second Chance Orange County

September 12, 2018

LONG BEACH, CA (September 12, 2018) - Farmers & Merchants Bank (F&M Bank), one of the strongest commercial and retail banks in California, collaborated to obtain a total of $45,000 in grants from the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco’s 2018 AHEAD Program for funding for Thomas House Family Shelter and Second Chance Orange County. The AHEAD Program supports targeted economic development projects and non-AHP-eligible housing initiatives that create or preserve jobs, deliver social services, training or educational programs, or other services and programs that benefit low- and moderate-income communities. AHEAD grants are awarded through members to community groups annually.

Thomas House Family Shelter's mission is to provide a safe, supportive environment and the resources necessary for homeless families with children in Orange County to remain together, while empowering them to become independent and self-sufficient. This project will help them increase their capacity to provide workforce development services to its families by bringing a dedicated Job Developer on staff. The new position will perform outreach to potential employers and work with families on education and work experience gaps, with the goal of helping 50 low-income homeless adults with children obtain employment or increase their earning capacity. The $20,000 grant will pay for the new staffer to expand the program.

Second Chance provides job and life skills training to low-income recovering drug and alcohol addicts in Orange County, many of whom are homeless, formerly incarcerated, or living with mental and physical disabilities. This project will fund workforce development services to 22 clients living in an emergency, transitional, and permanent supportive housing facility managed by a partner organization. Clients receive help with resume writing and interview coaching, support to complete high school degrees, and job placement services. The workforce development program helps clients become productive members of society and saves the public money through reduced incarceration and decreased use of emergency room services. The $25,000 grant will help pay for staff time for case management and instructors.

“Thank you to our friends at the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco for making this wonderful program available via its member banks,” said Cheryl Ryman, Vice President, Community Reinvestment Act Officer. “We congratulate Thomas House Family Shelter and Second Chance Orange County on these wonderful grant awards. These grants are going to help provide workforce development, empowering individuals and families to become independent and self-sufficient. Thomas House Family Shelter and Second Chance Orange County are wonderful assets to our community and we are grateful for the opportunity to assist in achieving their collective mission.”

“We are pleased that Farmers and Merchants Bank is using our 2018 AHEAD Program to collaborate with two very accomplished nonprofits, each with unique approaches to specific workforce development challenges,” said Marietta Núñez, Vice President and Community Investment Officer at FHLBank San Francisco. “With this support, Thomas House Family Shelter will be able to offer more families who have experienced homelessness opportunity as well as shelter, and Second Chance will be able to turn more lives around for the better.”

The Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco (FHLBank San Francisco) delivers low-cost funding and other services that help member financial institutions make home mortgages to people of all income levels and provide credit that supports neighborhoods and communities. The Bank also funds community programs that help members create affordable housing and promote community economic development.

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About Farmers & Merchants Bank

Founded in Long Beach in 1907 by C.J. Walker, Farmers & Merchants Bank has over $7.1 Billion in assets, and 25 branches across Orange County, Long Beach, the South Bay and now in Santa Barbara. The Bank specializes in commercial and small business banking, business loan programs, home loans, and a robust offering of consumer retail banking products, including checking, savings and youth accounts. Farmers & Merchants Bank is a California state chartered bank with deposits insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (Member FDIC) and an Equal Housing Lender.