A 32-year-old Las Vegas mother who was facing eviction over unpaid rent was showered with unwavering financial support after she received over $200,000 in donations on a GoFundMe she set up to help raise funds to settle her $2,000 debt.
Dasha Kelly and her daughters’ life took a turn for the better on Monday after they were featured by CNN in a segment looking at the expiration of the federal eviction moratorium that has since been extended. Kelly, who had been hard up on cash, set up the GoFundMe prior to the feature. Kelly, whose daughters are aged 8, 6 and 5, revealed they did not receive a single donation during the first month of the page being active. But that changed following the CNN feature as over 2,000 donations poured in in the space of 24-hours.
“I just want to tell everybody thank you so much,” a teary Kelly said Tuesday when she was informed about how much had been raised. “I’m still in denial.”
Kelly was previously employed as a card dealer but her financial woes started after she was laid off last year as a result of casinos having no choice but to shut down because of the pandemic. “I had no idea what we were going to do,” Kelly said about the possibility of being evicted from their home.
The mother of three said she’ll use a portion of the proceeds to settle their outstanding rent balance and also pay off the entire lease. She said she’ll also open a savings account for her three daughters “so that it can build until their [sic] 18”, adding that she’ll also create a $50,000 family rainy day fund. And besides that, Kelly said they’ll also be paying it forward to families who may be caught up in their situation and also donating to charity.
“It gave me a lot of hope,” Kelly said. “And I just want to make sure I do the best that I can to help the next person that is in my same situation.”
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reports that more than 11 million Americans owe rent, according to CNN. And the announcement of the extension of a moratorium on evictions by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday has given some of these tenants a lifeline. The moratorium, which was been extended to October 3, covers locations across the United States with high COVID-19 transmission levels, The Hill reported.
Prior to the announcement of the extension, a number of lawmakers including Reps. Cori Bush, Ilhan Omar and Ayanna Pressley slept on the steps of the Capitol in an effort to highlight the millions of Americans who could be evicted from their homes over unpaid rent if the moratorium wasn’t extended.