Collaboration Builds Prosperity

When NAZ parent Jill W. lost her home in a fire in 2015, she worried how the loss would affect her four young children—particularly her eldest son, Willie, who had previously struggled with behavioral problems as a result of housing instability.

So she called on her support network at NAZ and, together with several NAZ partner organizations, everyone made finding Jill and her family a new home their top priority.

As Jill was on the Achieving Through Stability (ATS) subsidy when her house caught fire, the compliance team at Project for Pride in Living (PPL)—the administrator of the subsidy—sent an emergency all-points bulletin to its property owners in North Minneapolis. One answered the call, and Jill moved into an affordable three-bedroom apartment a few months later. Eventually, Jill was able to graduate off the ATS subsidy altogether and soon began working on a homeownership goal with her NAZ team.

As luck would have it, PRG, Inc.—a Minneapolis-based nonprofit that offers quality, affordable housing development and related counseling and development services—approached NAZ with the rare opportunity for a NAZ family to own a home in North Minneapolis, with payments capped at 25 percent of monthly income.

The selection process for the home was highly competitive, but Jill’s responsiveness and hard work paid off. She closed on her home August 19, 2016—with her NAZ team beside her!

With a stable, comfortable home and a team of supports to track their progress, all four of Jill’s children are currently thriving at Sojourner Truth Academy, a NAZ partner school. Willie, who was nearly sent to a special education school as a result of behavioral problems, is now a 7th grader reading at a 10th grade level, and he was recognized by the state of Minnesota as a talented and gifted student!

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