HUD Archives: News Releases

Kristine Foye
(617) 994-8218
For Release
April 14, 2006


Today, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Regional Director Taylor Caswell joined Brockton Mayor James Harrington and local officials to welcome a family into their new affordable home, and to present a $700,000 YouthBuild grant to the Old Colony YMCA, which administers the very successful YouthBuild Brockton program.

The YouthBuild program provides young people who have struggled and who have not stayed in school the opportunity to receive their GED while learning life skills and a useful trade. The participants alternate between classroom training and working at a construction site to produce or renovate homes for low-income households or homeless families. More than 250 students have graduated from the YouthBuild Brockton program.

"The YouthBuild program serves a population that needs a bridge between youth and adulthood," said Caswell.
"It is a win-win since the participants learn marketable skills while producing affordable homes in their own communities."

The grant announced is part of $58 million in funding that has been awarded this year by HUD nationwide, and
$4.2 million awarded in Massachusetts.

This program is well supported financially and politically by the public and private sectors in the City of Brockton.
The Mayor and City Council transfer vacant city-owned lots to the Brockton Housing Authority. The housing
authority then approves a design and gets construction financing from a local bank. The Brockton YouthBuild
Program works with the housing authority, supervises the site, and builds the house. The house is then sold by
the housing authority to a low-income first-time homeowner who is a successful participant in the HUD-funded
Family Self Sufficiency Program and is chosen by lottery.

During the event, Caswell and local officials presented a ceremonial key to new homeowner Nema Duarte, an immigrant from Cape Verde who is a single mother of two boys age 12 and 7. This house is the sixth built by YouthBuild Brockton participants.


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