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CVS investing $12.4M for affordable housing, health screenings in Phoenix

(Photo courtesy of CVS Health)

PHOENIX — CVS Health is teaming up with local nonprofit UMOM New Day Centers to bring a new affordable housing complex to south Phoenix.

The retail pharmacy announced Thursday it will invest $12.4 million to help build 60 units in UMOM’s Newsom Village development near Ninth Street and Broadway Road.

The complex offers two- and three-bedroom apartments at reduced rent to families with demonstrated need, as well as units set aside for victims of domestic violence.

“We are very excited to open this up and to do our part in terms of adding more affordable housing because this goes right to the heart of this mission,” CEO of UMOM New Day Centers Jackson Fonder told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

“We love that we are partnering with a company like CVS but we also know we’re hardly making a dent in the problem. There’s a lot of work ahead of us.”

UMOM, which has been in the Valley for almost 55 years, works to prevent homeless through a system of supportive services including a family shelter, a women’s only shelter, affordable housing options and help building job skills and resumes.

The organization currently has around 500 units of affordable housing, according to Fonder. The newest complex broke ground last December and is estimated to be completed at the end of this year.

“Our waitlists are crazy,” Fonder said. “It’s not like we have a lot of vacancies. These things fill up quickly.

“To put it in perspective, we almost can’t build affordable housing fast enough to serve the need that is out there. That’s the situation we find ourselves in in 2021.”

Part of CVS’ investment will also expanding the company’s no-cost preventive health screening program, Project Health, in the greater Phoenix area.

A mobile RV will offer Phoenix residents body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, glucose and total cholesterol screenings to detect early risks for chronic conditions.

“When people have access to high-quality, affordable housing and services like preventive screenings, it puts them in a better position to take care of their health and manage chronic disease,” David Casey, chief diversity officer of CVS Health, said in a press release.

“As part of our commitment to address social justice and racial inequity, we’re addressing social determinants of health at the community level, which is where we can make a meaningful and lasting impact.”

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Ali Vetnar contributed to this report.

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