• By Heather Carlson Kehren

Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award to support efforts to prevent evictions in Olmsted County

September 7, 2018

miniature house in hands

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Efforts to prevent evictions in Olmsted County, Minnesota will get a $50,000 boost, thanks to a grant sponsored by Mayo Clinic

The “Eviction Prevention” project is the winner of the 2018 Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award — an annual award given by Mayo Clinic to address communitywide health priorities in Olmsted County. Community members and Mayo Clinic staff cast their votes for their favorite project among three finalists. Thousands of people voted, and efforts to prevent evictions earned the most votes.

The Eviction Prevention project is a collaboration of Legal Assistance of Olmsted County, Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota and Olmsted County District Court.

“The Shared Value Award will help provide legal assistance for up to 100 families to prevent eviction and provide financial counseling through Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota to help stabilize families dealing with financial challenges,” says Karen Fairbairn Nath, executive director of Legal Assistance of Olmsted County.

Fairbairn Nath said that there are approximately 350 eviction cases every year in Olmsted County.

“Once a notice of eviction is filed with the court, the eviction is permanently on an individual’s record and may, at minimum, prevent a person from obtaining future rental housing. This often brings on a cascading set of negative effects, including longer-term financial instability and mental health stress for individuals and families, among others,” Fairbairn Nath says.

Eviction Prevention is a project designed to help address financial stress and mental health ─ two of five health priorities in Olmsted County identified in the Olmsted County Community Health Needs Assessment. Mayo Clinic is a core member of the Olmsted County Community Health Assessment and Planning Partnership and supports communitywide health improvement efforts through the Mayo Clinic Shared Value Award.

“We are fortunate to live in such a collaborative community,” says Erin Sexton, community relations director for Mayo Clinic. “The Shared Value Award is one way that Mayo Clinic can demonstrate its appreciation and commitment to our community, and celebrate collaboration in addressing our community’s toughest challenges.”

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