Highlights include vaccination clinics, rental assistance funding, and efforts to expand diversity, equity, and inclusion
45th anniversary of the Peabody Companies a group of award-winning property management and real estate firms.
At the beginning of the year, the Peabody Companies distinguished itself by becoming one of the first property management companies to offer COVID vaccination clinics to its senior affordable housing communities throughout the commonwealth, starting in January. The Peabody Companies coordinated more than 165 vaccine clinics at 58 unique housing communities earlier this year, which led to the vaccination of more than 3,800 residents, staff, and community members.
The Peabody Companies’ principals, CEO Karen Fish-Will and COO Melissa Fish-Crane also acknowledged early on the magnitude the pandemic could have on its residents from a financial standpoint and worked diligently throughout the last 20 months to provide specific interim policies in anticipation of rent payment issues. Over this past year in particular, the Peabody Companies has facilitated nearly $2.5 million in rental assistance, in keeping with its ongoing commitment to connecting residents with resources during this challenging time and ensuring successful residencies. In all, as of mid-November, Peabody Properties received $2,153,591.58 in RAFT funding, $20,108.00 in ERMA funding, and $274,021.40 in SHERA funding, for a year-to-date total of $2,447,720.98.
The Peabody Companies is also committed to examining its diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts – with its staff members, clients, residents and community partners. Through persistence, scheduled listening tours, participant-driven conversations and focused exercises, the organization is working to effectively identify and disrupt existing patterns of prejudice, implement meaningful cultural changes, and develop training initiatives to create and foster an open and inclusive environment throughout all levels of the organization.
In recognition of their outstanding leadership in ensuring that all people feel a sense of belonging in the workplace, Peabody Properties was honored by the Institute of Real Estate Management® (IREM) Boston Metropolitan Chapter No. 4 with the organization’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award on December 2 at IREM Boston’s annual meeting.
In particular, Peabody Properties was selected to receive this award as a result of the organization’s efforts to promote diversity, equity, inclusion, culture competency and development among staff, residents, vendors, contractors, coworkers, peers, and community; implement policies and procedures in key areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion for recruitment, employee retention, residential leasing and retention programs; encourage volunteerism in the community with regard to cultural connections and/or diversity outreach programs; and proactively contribute to local diversity and minority issues by building relationships with diverse communities and educating citizens on matters of diversity disparities.
The Peabody Companies also reached a milestone in 2021 of $27 million in funding for its affordable housing portfolio through the Massachusetts LEAN Multifamily Program. LEAN is the statewide network of local Community Action Agencies which provide energy efficiency and other energy services at no cost to income eligible clients. The LEAN Program is tailored to deliver complete, cost-effective gas and electric efficiency measures for affordable housing across Massachusetts.
Working in collaboration with ACTION Inc. and ABCD Action Energy Services numerous Peabody Properties’ communities, including Park Gardens in Methuen, Massachusetts, Fabens Building in Lynn, Massachusetts, and The Moorings at Squantum Gardens in Quincy, Massachusetts, have received electrical and gas upgrades over the course of the last two years, resulting in cost savings, increased energy efficiency and most importantly added comfort to residents.
“Despite a year with a number of challenges, we are proud of what we’ve accomplished to help our residents feel more safe and secure in their homes and to help our clients achieve stability while continuing to provide the highest level of services,” said Fish-Will. “We’re also committed to our DEI efforts. While we’ve already seen good progress on these initiatives, we look forward to doing more to foster these ideals.”