SEMMCHRA Coronavirus Operations Summary

Due to the Coronavirus, the SEMMCHRA office is closed to the public, effective Wed., March 18, 2020.  The services we provide are absolutely essential and we are still available to serve you by email, phone, mail and through our website.  Our office number is 651-565-2638.   


Dear Residents,

Based on recent CDC guidance and the repeal of Governor Walz’s statewide mask requirement, SEMMCHRA has removed the requirement of mask/face covering use for fully vaccinated individuals within the SEMMCHRA rental buildings effective immediately.

In accordance with CDC guidelines, individuals who are fully vaccinated may resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing. Residents should follow CDC and MDH guidance for recommendations on personal use regarding masks/face coverings. We will not require proof of vaccination, but we ask residents for responsible and respectful cooperation with this change in policy.

All residents and visitors are encouraged to be friendly neighbors and conscious of other residents and staff as the building transitions out of the pandemic. In particular, please be mindful of small spaces such elevators, stairwells, the mail area, etc

The SEMMCHRA office is open by appointment only.  Please continue to contact your property manager by phone or email.  For rental payments we encourage you to set up automatic banking for monthly rent payments, mail monthly rent payments or drop rent payments in the drop box at the SEMMCHRA office.  To learn more about automatic banking, please contact your property manager.

Thank you,

Buffy J. Beranek, Executive Director


This program was created to help Minnesotans who have fallen behind on their rent or fear that could happen. If you find yourself in this position, we are here to help. To find out if you qualify and get ready to apply please visit or click on the checklists below.  If you have additional questions please dial 2-1-1 to be directed to the United Way helpline.

Applications for the program will be accepted starting April 15th.  Renters MUST submit their applications through

Rental Assistance Checklist (Renters)

Rental Assistance Checklist (Landlords)

HUD Program Waivers

On April 10, 2020, HUD released PIH Notice 2020-05: COVID-19 Statutory and Regulatory Waivers for the Public Housing, Housing Choice Voucher, Indian Housing Block Grant and Indian Community Development Block Grant programs, Suspension of Public Housing Assessment System and Section Eight Management Assessment Program.  There are short-term and long-term waivers described in this notice.

Click here to identify the waivers that will be utilized by SEMMCHRA.

Assistance Is Available

Are you a SEMMCHRA resident experiencing difficult circumstances due to the Covid-19 Pandemic? Rent remains due, so communication is more important than ever. Please contact our office right away to discuss changes in income. We are committed to working with you during this challenging time to make adjustments in rent or alternative payment arrangements. A list of contact numbers for SEMMCHRA staff can be found here.

Emergency Budgeting Tips

Are you concerned about being able to pay your bills due to a job loss or a reduction in income?  For emergency budgeting tips, click here.

Precautions Implemented for the Safety of Residents and Staff

*SEMMCHRA lobby closed to the public
*Building common areas closed to resident gatherings
*Congregate dining is suspended; meals are in apartments
*Maintenance will not enter occupied units unless the need is urgent
*Suspension of housekeeping inspections
*Common areas being sanitized more frequently
*Hand sanitizer stations in common areas
*Face masks distributed in buildings with common areas
*Minimal in-person meetings
*Paperwork received electronically, in office dropbox or via mail
*Staff wearing masks and self-monitoring for signs of illness
*Request for essential visitors only in buildings

Support During a Difficult Time

It is more important than ever to take care of yourself as well as family and neighbors.  Staying in touch and checking in on others is a great way to cope with stress and help others through this unsettling time.

If you or someone you know is feeling overwhelmed by the Covid-19 Pandemic, help is available.  Speak with a professional for help dealing with stress, anxiety and worry.

Mental Health Support:
Phone: 1-844-274-7472
Text: MN to 741741

Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question for SEMMCHRA? Start with our FAQ page.

With concerns of the spreading Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), SEMMCHRA is encouraging staff, tenants, applicants, and the general public to be informed on the known facts about the disease and ways to protect themselves and others.

3/16/2020Memo to SEMMCHRA Residents, Participants, and Clients

Please visit the Center for Disease Control website for more information.

Wabasha Area Food Shelf

Every Thursday from 10:00 – noon.

Location:  Side door at St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center


No appointment needed.  No-contact drive-up service.  Delivery is available.

Attn: First Time Visitors

Deciding to use the food shelf may be difficult. But these are different times and we’re all having to adapt to a new normal. For many of us, getting some or most of our food from the food shelf is the best choice to make right now.

You do not need to show identification or answer eligibility questions. No need to sign any papers. It’s a no touch-service by a couple of friendly people who want us all to get through this very difficult time. That’s what community is all about.

Mazeppa Area Food Shelf

Second Thursday of the month from 9:30 am to 11 am and 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Fourth Thursday of the month from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm

Location:  329 1st Ave N, Mazeppa, MN 55956


Drive-up/Curbside, Pre-packed Boxes, Modified Client Choice, choice on refrigerated, freezer, and produce on what is available.

Deliver available in Mazeppa, Bellechester, and Zumbro Falls.

Lake City Food Shelf

Tuesdays from 1 pm to 3 pm

Thursdays from 9 am to 11 am

Second & Fourth Saturday of month from 9 am to 11 am

Location:  600 S 8th St, Lake City, MN 55041


Serves School District 813-Lake City and surrounding area.

Walk-ins welcome.

Contact Carole Helgerson for special circumstances.