New Beginnings

In the winter of 2013, Keenan T.—a single dad—rented a room from a woman who subsequently skipped out of town with the rent money. As a result, the heat was turned off. Keenan and his then-seven-year-old son were suddenly trapped in a rented room whose only source of heat came from the two space heaters Keenan had purchased.

Keenan reached out to NAZ for help and was connected to the housing navigator and subsequently Urban Homeworks, a NAZ partner organization. Urban Homeworks worked with Keenan to secure new housing with another NAZ partner organization, Project for Pride in Living, and subsidize his rent through the Achieving Through Stability (ATS) fund. In July 2014, Keenan and his son moved into their new apartment.

With the support of NAZ partner organization, Emerge Community Development, Keenan was also able to complete a 20-week construction program at Summit Academy through the Workforce Investment Network (WIN) program. On September 30, Keenan graduated from the construction program with the goal of working on the Vikings stadium. His son, mom, girlfriend, and NAZ connector were there to cheer for him when he went onstage.

Housing stability and job training are crucial for building a healthy home to support a child scholar’s academic success. When parents are supported, children are supported.

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