April 9, 2010
HUD AWARDS $1.4 MILLION IN GRANTS TO HELP LOW-INCOME FAMILIES
IN PENNSYLVANIA RECEIVE JOB TRAINING, EMPLOYMENT
Housing authorities across the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico receiving nearly
PHILADELPHIA - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced that public housing agencies across the U.S., Guam and Puerto Rico will receive nearly $49.3 million to provide low-income people with
the necessary job training to put them on a path toward self-sufficiency.
Public housing authorities in the state of Pennsylvania will receive $1,478,680.
Funded through HUD's Housing Choice Voucher Family Self-Sufficiency Program (HCV/FSS), the grants allow public housing agencies (PHAs) to work with welfare agencies, schools, businesses, and other local partners to develop a comprehensive program to help participating individuals develop the skills and experience to enable them to obtain jobs that pay a living wage.
In today's economy, this program is needed more than ever to help families obtain the skills that lead to jobs, said Donovan. On the heels of President Obama signing the jobs bill that will boost job creation, I'm pleased HUD is providing this funding to local housing authorities that will keep caseworkers on the job to assist families in HUD's voucher program find employment.
Local housing authorities use the funding to hire family self-sufficiency coordinators to link adults in the Housing Choice Voucher program to local organizations that provide job training, childcare, counseling, transportation and job placement. These housing authorities can also hire coordinators to help families get homeownership counseling.
Participants in the HCV/FSS program sign a contract that requires the head of the household will get a job and the family will no longer receive welfare assistance at the end of the five-year term. As the family's income rises, a portion of that increased income is deposited in an interest-bearing escrow account. If the family completes its FSS contract, the family receives the escrow funds that it can use for any purpose, including a down payment on a
home, paying educational expenses, starting a business or paying back debts.