HOUSTON - The CDC eviction moratorium ends Saturday, and a survey by the U.S. Census estimates 3.6 million people nationwide will be evicted in the coming months.
One local home for homeless families says it's already seeing an 80% increase in applications.
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"It was pretty devastating. Having kids and being a mom and being a person that’s solely responsible. At one point, I didn’t know if we were even going to be able to stay together," said single mother Tara Campbell.
We met her with her two sons, 12-year-old Micah, and nearly 2-year-old Cordell. Campbell lost two jobs and had to move out of her rental home, not wanting an eviction on her record.
"Sleepless, sleepless nights worrying with him being older and he was going to hate me, and can't depend on me because I’m not able to provide things for him, Campbell said through her tears. "I don’t want him to have bad memories of always struggling."
They're in a safe place now, at Gracewood, which provides homes, counseling, and education for single mothers and their children. But it's still tough.
"It’s been hard, but I just try not to really think about it," said Micah. "This is it now."
Micah says he hasn't been able to see his friends.
"It’s hard," he told us. "I miss them, I really do."
Gracewood Program Director Vi White says they actually had a drop in applications during the pandemic.
"Chalked it up to the amount of aid people have been able to receive as well as the eviction moratorium," White explained.
But she says the phone has already started ringing again.
"Over the last three weeks, we've seen about an 80% increase in the number of applications we’ve received," White added.
But through it all, Campbell feels lucky. Gracewood is helping her get her teaching credential and a brighter future.
"I look forward to having that career for the rest of my life and not have to go from job to job to job," she said. "Jobs that aren’t COVID proof, especially."
Memorial Assistance Ministries in Northwest Houston says their phone is also ringing, as they are helping people apply for the Houston-Harris Emergency Rental Assistance and emergency funds.
"We’re really worried, particularly about folks who don’t have a plan," said Matthew Cox, MAM's Senior Vice President of Programs. "They waited too long to apply, or they did apply several weeks ago, and they’ve not heard back. What are they going to do? What are their options?"
People can contact MAM by calling (713) 574-7533 for English, and (713) 574-7536 for Spanish or through its website.
If you need legal help and can't afford an attorney, you may qualify for free legal help through can go to StopTXEviction.org.