|HUD No. 14-001
Joseph J. Phillips
January 10, 2014
HUD AWARDS OVER $1,000,000 TO NORTH CAROLINA PUBLIC HOUSING AUTHORITIES TO PROMOTE FAMILY SELF-SUFFICIENCY
Funding helps gain critical employment/life skills to compete for decent jobs
GREENSBORO - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today awarded $1,063,107 in grants to North Carolina, of the nearly $16.3 million awarded nationwide, to assist public housing residents to gain access to education, job training and employment. HUD's Public Housing Family Self-Sufficiency Program (PH-FSS) helps public housing authorities across the country to hire or retain more than 300 program coordinators who will work directly with families to connect them to the supportive services that meet their individual needs and to become gainfully employed. See local funding announced today.
HUD recently awarded an additional $57 million to hundreds of public housing authorities, allowing them to hire or retain more than one thousand program coordinators to help families participating in the Department's Housing Choice Voucher Program.
"This is a modest investment that can make a world of difference for families looking to find their path to self-sufficiency," said HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan. "As America's economy continues to recover, it's critical that we work to make sure every American has the skills and resources they need to successfully compete for jobs in the 21st Century."
"These grants and the service coordinators they fund help residents acquire the skills to open doors of opportunity to a good job and self-sufficiency," said HUD Southeast Regional Administrator Ed Jennings, Jr. "Investing in families looking to find their way to self-sufficiency is a fundamental difference maker bringing hope and renewed opportunism for a better life."
The program coordinators retained or hired through HUD's Family Self Sufficiency programs work directly with residents to connect them with local organizations that provide education and job training and placement opportunities; as well as childcare, counseling, transportation and computer and financial literacy services available in their community. These programs encourages innovative strategies that link public housing and voucher assistance with other resources to enable participating families to find employment; increase earned income; reduce or eliminate the need for rental and/or welfare assistance; and make progress toward achieving economic independence and housing self-sufficiency.
Participants sign a five-year contract that requires the head of the household to obtain employment and 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 successfully completes its FSS contract, the family receives the escrow funds that it can use for any purpose, including paying educational expenses, starting a business or paying debts.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD is working to strengthen the housing market to bolster the economy and protect consumers; meet the need for quality affordable rental homes: utilize housing as a platform for improving quality of life; build inclusive and sustainable communities free from discrimination; and transform the way HUD does business. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and espanol.hud.gov. You can also follow HUD on twitter @HUDnews, on facebook at www.facebook.com/HUD, or sign up for news alerts on HUD's News Listserv.